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How Long Does It Take to Detox From Heroin?


In 2019 alone, almost 71,000 Americans lost their lives due to complications stemming from a drug overdose. Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicate nearly 20% of those deaths involved heroin. When compared to other drugs, heroin is relatively easy to obtain. Many people start using heroin after developing an addiction to prescription pain medications that they can no longer get for various reasons. The effects of heroin closely mirror the effects of common prescription opioids like oxycodone, and it is often used as a substitute for someone with a prescription opioid addiction.

Like other opioids, heroin is a highly addictive drug. Ongoing heroin use will eventually lead to dependency and addiction. The journey to overcoming heroin addiction can be complex, challenging, and sometimes dangerous without help from a professional heroin treatment program to support and guide you through withdrawal and treatment.


Does Heroin Cause Withdrawal?

Heroin use and abuse lead to both physical and psychological addiction. When you are addicted to the effects of a substance like heroin and try to reduce or stop taking it, your body struggles to adapt to a sudden lack of the drug in your system. This leads to withdrawal. Although the physical symptoms of heroin detox can be complex and sometimes dangerous without medical supervision, psychological withdrawal symptoms are often equally as challenging to manage.


What are the Symptoms of Heroin Withdrawal?

The side effects of heroin withdrawal are typically a combination of physical and emotional (psychological) symptoms. Many people who are addicted to heroin (or any other addictive substance) fear what may happen or how they will feel if they stop using. These psychological symptoms, including intense and overwhelming anxiety and fear of the unknown, are typically at the root of why so many who could benefit from heroin addiction treatment avoid going to rehab in Indianapolis.

In addition to the psychological challenges accompanying detoxing from heroin, physical withdrawal symptoms will also occur. Depending on the severity of your addiction, your symptoms may range from mild to severe. The first symptoms of heroin withdrawal can begin within a few hours after your last dose. Suppose you withdraw from heroin after long-term, regular use (a severe addiction). In that case, it is vital to remember that you are at an increased risk for severe medical complications, and detoxing at a heroin detox program is the safest and most effective way to get clean.

Heroin withdrawal effects vary based on several factors, including your individual patterns of use, how long you have been using, and if you have other medical or mental health conditions that could complicate your recovery. While symptoms will differ from person to person, there are several common side effects of heroin withdrawal. A few examples include:

  • Intense cravings for heroin
  • Extreme sweating, including cold sweats
  • Nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea
  • Severe muscle aches and pains
  • Feelings of heaviness in your body
  • Extreme pain in muscles and bones
  • Insomnia
  • Runny nose
  • Fever


How Long Does It Take to Detox From Heroin?

The time required to detox from heroin also varies from person to person and is, at least partially, dependent on the severity of your addiction. For some, the symptoms that occur during heroin withdrawal can subside within seven to ten days, with peak symptoms occurring during the first 72 hours of detox. Most heroin withdrawal symptoms will resolve within seven to fourteen days; however, some mild to moderate can persist for months or years after completing detox. After detox, it is important to transition to an addiction treatment program where comprehensive therapy will help you develop and practice crucial coping tools to manage relapse triggers after treatment ends.


How to Find a Heroin Detox Program in Indiana

Overcoming an addiction to heroin is not typically a straightforward process. However, seeking help to put heroin addiction in the past is a vital step toward lasting health and wellness. Heroin detox and withdrawal often cause intense and sometimes overwhelming symptoms that are indeed challenging to manage without treatment assistance. At SEE Purpose, a drug addiction treatment center in Indiana, we can help you get through the most challenging parts of detox.

We understand the process of addiction recovery looks different for everyone. We will work with you to develop an individualized treatment plan designed to meet your unique treatment needs and goals in the safest and most effective way possible. Contact a member of our admissions team today to learn more about our treatment programs in Indianapolis.

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