As an illicit substance, heroin abuse comes with a host of adverse effects all its own. When combined with fentanyl, a powerful opiate analgesic, the dangers of heroin alone pale in comparison. Commonly used to treat conditions involving severe pain symptoms, fentanyl, by itself, can be just as dangerous when used for recreational purposes.
The dangers of a heroin/fentanyl mix go over and above the damaging effects of heroin with some people experiencing the very worse of what this dangerous mix has to offer as of the first time trying it. Without needed heroin addiction treatment, the effects of heroin and fentanyl abuse will inevitably leave a person helpless to the pull of addiction and the consequences that come with it.
The Dangers of Heroin and Fentanyl
More often than not, a person will likely encounter this mix of drugs on the streets, as the type of fentanyl used is manufactured in underground laboratories. This means, any one batch of heroin may contain fentanyl in varying amounts and in some cases fentanyl may be used as the sole ingredient while being “marketed” as heroin. Depending on the ratio of ingredients, any one dose of this drug combo can potentially send a person into a comatose state.
Like heroin, fentanyl produces short-acting effects, which drives users to keep ingesting the drug in order to sustain the drug “high.” As fentanyl potency levels can run considerably higher than heroin’s, the potential for addiction takes hold as of the very first time trying a heroin/fentanyl mix.
Overall, heroin addiction treatment addresses the compulsive drug-using urges that come with heroin addiction. This treatment approach becomes all the more necessary when fentanyl’s effects enter the picture.
Opiate drugs in general have a slowing or depressant-type effect on the brain and body’s chemical processes. In terms of drug strength, the stronger the drug the greater its depressant effects.
Bodily processes most affected include:
- Respiratory system
- Cardiovascular system
- Circulatory system
- Digestive system
- Body temperature regulation
Ultimately, heroin and fentanyl amplify one another’s effects and can easily shut down one or more of the body’s major systems when used in large enough amounts. Not surprisingly, overdose and fatality rates run extremely high among those who use heroin and fentanyl on a regular basis. According to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, opiate-related overdose incidents have increased by 200 percent since the year 2000.
When to Consider Heroin Addiction Treatment
Over time, the repeated use of heroin and fentanyl all but cripples a person’s ability to maintain control of his or her life. Likewise, the dangers involved place users at ongoing risk of catastrophic consequences.
Heroin addiction treatment provides the type of physical and emotional support needed to overcome the effects of these drugs. If you or someone you know struggles with heroin addiction in any form, please don’t hesitate to call our toll-free helpline at 800-442-6158 Who Answers? to speak with one of our addictions specialists.