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True or False?

Examining 8 Commonly Held Beliefs About Heroin

Heroin is one of the most insidious drugs I have ever come in contact with. It likes to slowly slip its way into your life posing as a helpful little friend. It slowly digs its claws into you, but you don’t feel it. Then, when you try to kick it away, it grabs a hold and won’t let go. Amazingly, for how dangerous this drug is, it is still surrounded by myths. I’m going to dispel the 8 most common ones right now.

8 Commonly Held Beliefs
  1. Heroin is instantly addictive

    Heroin may be a dangerous and deadly drug, but it doesn’t have instant addictive qualities. In fact, most users don’t become addicted until well after a month of habitual use.
  2. Heroin is less dangerous when smoked or snorted

    Heroin is just as addictive in pill and smoked form as it is in IV form. The only difference is how long it takes for the drug to take effect. The only risk that may be reduced is the risk of infections and disease from using shared needles.
  3. Heroin is only used by older drug users

    The average age of heroin users is 21. It used to be the case that heroin was the choice of the older crowd, but that has changed and now teenagers and young adults are the major consumers.
  4. Methadone is more harmful than heroin

    Methadone, taken under the supervision of a medical professional, is much less dangerous than heroin. It is true that methadone is a drug, but it is part of the process of weaning severe addicts away from heroin without the devastating side effects that come from cold quitting.
  5. Abstinence is the best way to stop using

    The pain associated with heroin withdrawal is the major reason that quitting on your own is so hard. The flu-like symptoms and violent bouts of shaking coupled with the craving for another hit make it almost impossible to quit on your own. A good rehab center and support group will help tremendously.
  6. Heroin is too expensive for younger users

    Heroin pills and powder are much cheaper to produce than the IV variety and thus can be sold at cheaper prices. This has led to younger users being able to get a hold of the drug and start using.
  7. Heroin isn’t the same problem today that it was in the 1970s

    Heroin use may not be as rampant as is was prior to the influx of cocaine on the street, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t a problem. Several studies have found that over 3.7 million Americans have tried heroin at least once and that over 350,000 are habitual users. These numbers are probably low, because the surveys taken were self-report.
  8. All rehab programs are the same

    Every rehab program is different. The best programs are those that key in on the needs of the individual and offer continued support throughout recovery. They may or may not contain hospitalization or medical services, but the best ones do. The big picture on heroin hasn’t changed one bit since the 1970s. But, instead of a high-end drug for middle aged men, it has become an accessible drug for teens and is potentially devastating a whole new generation. If you or someone you know is addicted and needs help quitting, seek out a qualified rehab in your area and take the first step toward being clean and sober today.