Heroin is an illegal drug. Individuals who choose to use heroin crave the warm and fuzzy feelings it produces. Some people use heroin to relieve anxiety, physical pain, and emotional distress. However, self-medicating with heroin can come with serious effects on one’s health. Drug addiction can impair an individual’s mental health, strain relationships, and cause a financial burden. Seeking professional treatment is an essential choice for achieving a mentally and physically healthier lifestyle. Participating in individual therapy such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) with 12 South Recovery can significantly help individuals with opioid use disorder (OUD) overcome heroin addiction.
What Is Heroin?
Heroin is a dangerous drug that can be destructive to one’s life. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), heroin is made from morphine and is classified as an opioid. It is derived from a natural plant called the opium poppy plant. These plants are known to be grown in Mexico, Southwest Asia, and Columbia. In its drug form, heroin takes the form of brown or white powder. It may also look like a black sticky substance, which can be known as black tar heroin.
How Is Heroin Used?
According to NIDA, heroin can be used in many ways. There are several different methods of getting the drug into one’s system. The method of administration impacts the degree of harm to one’s body. Some people blend heroin with crack cocaine and other prescription opioids for an intensified effect. Different methods may include:
Heroin Addiction Statistics
Addiction is a worldwide problem, yet it affects many U.S. citizens every day. As stated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in 2020 approximately 19% or more opioid overdoses in the U.S. involved heroin. It was estimated that the overdose death rate from 2019 to 2020 decreased by seven percent. However, the fentanyl-based market has become increasingly popular. Therefore, fewer individuals are initiating heroin drug use.
Health Dangers From Heroin Addiction
Heroin is an extremely addictive drug. Individuals facing difficulty with addiction may continue to use the drug to prevent harmful withdrawal symptoms. According to the National Drug Intelligence Center (NDIC), those who choose to abuse heroin are at risk for serious health complications and overdose. This is partly due to the fact it is impossible to know the purity of the drug as it is sold on the streets and commonly mixed with other substances. Symptoms of a heroin overdose may include:
- Shallow breathing
The long-term effects of heroin can be detrimental to one’s health. These may include:
- Exposure to blood-borne viruses
- Heart infection
- Liver and kidney disease
- Scarred or collapsed veins
The Value of Individual Therapy for Heroin Addiction
Many individuals with heroin addiction have difficulty managing co-occurring mental health conditions. Therefore, choosing to follow through with professional help can be paramount. Treatment will assist individuals facing challenges with heroin addiction in finding wellness and inner peace. Individual therapy is a type of psychotherapy that teaches people with opioid use disorder (OUD) the skills needed to cope with cravings and impulses to use substances.
One-on-one therapy at 12 South Recovery gives individuals a safe, private environment where they can open up solely with a therapist. By discussing different thought patterns, challenges, and behaviors, the client and therapist work together toward change. By promoting healthy coping mechanisms, individual therapy can increase an individual’s self-esteem, self-awareness, and communication skills.
Why Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) Is Effective for Heroin Addiction
Unquestionably, CBT is one of the most common types of individual therapy for those having difficulties overcoming heroin addiction. This type of therapy can be done one-on-one with a therapist in a quiet environment. With each session, those with heroin addiction learn to recognize the problems and behaviors involved in addiction.
If someone had been using heroin to relieve anxiety and emotional distress, they can learn new healthy strategies to prevent addictive behaviors. People who use heroin to treat pain can learn how to manage their negative thoughts associated with the pain. Moreover, CBT essentially tackles the root cause and teaches people new thought patterns that help them move forward in recovery.
Equally importantly, committing to individual therapy and continuing to use healthy skills learned in therapy outside of treatment can contribute to long-term sobriety. Choosing professional help can require sacrificing an old lifestyle. This may include removing toxic friends that continue to abuse drugs, participating in sober activities, and using free time to focus on treatment.
Participating in Individual therapy is worth every ounce of effort as it can promote healthier relationships, a balanced work life, and an improved sense of well-being. One-on-one therapy can help individuals with OUD steer in a more positive direction and achieve a better, healthier future.
Heroin addiction can be extremely difficult to face alone. Surrendering to treatment can be a wise choice. Individual therapy can help people learn the skills needed to manage their symptoms and overcome addiction. As a licensed and Joint Commission-accredited mental health treatment center, 12 South Recovery is a leader in Orange County mental health treatment. We understand that individual therapy is essential to individuals in recovery from heroin addiction and co-occurring mental health conditions. We use an evidence-based approach to addiction and mental health treatment. Long-term recovery is possible with 12 South Recovery. If you or a loved one are in need of professional support, call 12 South Recovery at (888) 830-8374 to learn more.