Scottsdale, Arizona Heroin Addiction and Treatment Options

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There are many people in Scottsdale, Arizona who are battling addictions to heroin. Rehab programs are available, which means no one has to face recovery alone. It is possible to beat heroin addiction with the right support.

With a fantastic climate and beautiful landscape, Scottsdale is the fifth largest city in Arizona. With a motto of “The west’s most western town” Scottsdale is home to a variety of businesses, art galleries, restaurants, golf courses, and nightclubs. Frank Lloyd Wright’s home in Scottsdale has been declared a World Heritage site by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.

Scottsdale is part of Maricopa county. Maricopa County is the United States’ fourth-most populous county. With a population in 2021 of 4,651,440 more than half the people in Arizona live in Maricopa county. With that many people in the county, it is likely more than just a couple of people could be battling a heroin addiction.

Heroin Use in Scottsdale, Arizona

The 2019 National Survey on Drug Use and Health shows that 745,000 people used heroin at some point during 2019 across the United States. The Arizona Department of Health Services lists all hospitalizations and emergency room visits caused by drug use for each county.

  • In 2018 there were 12,278 hospitalizations from opiate use, including heroin, in Maricopa county
  • In 2018 there were 7,159 emergency room visits because of opiate use, including heroin, in Maricopa county

There were 898 people killed by opiate use between October 2018 and September 2019. Some of those deaths were due to heroin use.

What is Heroin?

Heroin is an illicit opioid drug derived from morphine. Morphine is a natural substance found in the seed pod of opium poppy plants. Heroin can be a brown or white powder. It can also be found in a black sticky form called black tar heroin. There is no medical use for heroin in the United States.

Common street names for heroin:

  • Big h
  • Horse
  • Hell dust
  • Smack
  • Skunk
  • Brown sugar
  • Chiva dope
  • Junk
  • White horse
  • skag

How do People use Heroin?

Heroin can be used in a few different ways:

  • Injection with needles
  • Sniffing
  • Snorting
  • Smoking

What Are The Effects of Heroin?

Heroin enters the brain and is converted to morphine. The morphine then binds to opioid receptors in the brain. When this happens people report feeling a rush of euphoria. Short-term side effects include:

  • Warm flushing of the skin
  • Heavy feeling in the arms and legs
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Dry mouth
  • Severe itching
  • Clouded mental function
  • Going back in forth between conscious and semiconscious

Long Term Effects of Heroin Use

Just like any kind of substance abuse, there are health consequences of using heroin. The longer someone uses a drug the worse the health problems can become. Long-term effects of heroin use include:

  • Insomnia
  • Collapsed veins in those who inject heroin
  • Damaged tissue inside the nose in those who sniff or snort heroin
  • Infection of the heart lining and valves
  • Abscesses (swollen tissue filled with pus)
  • Constipation
  • Stomach cramps
  • Liver disease
  • Kidney disease
  • Lung problems
  • Depression
  • Antisocial personality disorder
  • Sexual dysfunction in men
  • Irregular menstrual cycles in women
  • Contracting hepatitis or HIV from sharing needles

Signs of Heroin Addiction

There are a few different ways to tell someone has been using heroin. It may take a while for people to notice if the user is good at hiding their drug use. These are some signs that someone is currently high on heroin:

  • Tiny pupils
  • Droopy facial expressions
  • Flushed skin
  • Falling asleep suddenly
  • Slow breathing
  • Confused thinking

Noticing behavior changes can also show that a person has an addiction. There are many signs of addiction that are common of many different drugs. There are some specific signs that someone has been using heroin:

  • Often needing laxatives or stool softeners, heroin use can cause constipation
  • Wearing long-sleeve shirts even in warm weather to hide needle marks from injecting heroin
  • Burn marks on the mouth or fingers from smoking heroin
  • Having drug paraphernalia

Heroin Paraphernalia

A big clue that someone is addicted to heroin is having drug paraphernalia around. Different methods of using heroin require different items.

  • Hypodermic needles used to inject heroin into veins in the arm
  • A shoelace or rubber hose to tie off the arm to make the veins easier to find
  • Spoons to “cook” the heroin into a liquid form for injection
  • A lighter or candle to use as a heat source
  • Aluminum foil, cigarette, or rolling papers to put heroin on to smoke it

Other Signs of Addiction

Some of the signs of addiction that are common for any drug include:

  • Difficulties in school and decline grades
  • Lack of interest in hobbies or activities
  • Chronically being late
  • Poor work performance
  • Wearing dirty clothing and a lack of good grooming habits
  • Increased need for privacy, hiding texts or calls
  • Not paying bills
  • Requesting to borrow money
  • Decreased appetite and weight loss
  • Dropping old friends, adding questionable new friends
  • Social withdrawal, isolating themselves
  • Legal problems
  • Changes in sleeping patterns

Mixing Heroin With Other Substances

Oftentimes someone who is addicted to one drug will also use other drugs or alcohol. Using multiple substances together can alter the effects of heroin on the body. It can increase the danger of a bad reaction.

  • Heroin mixed with alcohol can increase the chances of an overdose. Both substances lower blood pressure and heart rate. It could lead to a coma.
  • Heroin mixed with benzodiazepines can slow the rate of breathing. Benzodiazepines can make the overdose reversal drug naloxone less effective.
  • Mixing heroin and cocaine is called a speedball. Cocaine is a stimulant that can also cause breathing problems and change a person’s heart rate.

Does Quitting Heroin Cause Withdrawal Symptoms?

Heroin addiction is dangerous, it can destroy a person’s life. Stopping a heroin addiction often requires outside help because withdrawal symptoms can be hard to handle. Often when someone tries to quit on their own, they will start using again because they get sick from the withdrawal. Heroin withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Restlessness
  • Insomnia
  • Diarrhea
  • Muscle and bone pain
  • Cold flashes with goosebumps
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Depression

Heroin Detox Facilities

For some addiction issues, the first step is attending a detox treatment program. Detoxification is when a substance completely leaves the body. During this process, a person goes through physical and mental changes while not continuing to use a substance.

Going through a detox program is usually recommended for someone with an opioid addiction like heroin. The biggest complication is returning to drug use. Most opiate overdose deaths occur in people who have just detoxed. Withdrawal reduces the person’s tolerance to the drug, so those who have just gone through withdrawal can overdose on a much smaller dose than they used to take.

Types of Detox Programs Available in Scottsdale, AZ

Holistic detox– A Holistic detox approach uses natural methods to support the body while it empties of drugs.  The method combines nutritional therapy, emotional support, and exercise programs to assist recovery. Many people who suffer from addictions do not have healthy bodies due to drug use.

Medical detox- Medical detox uses medical supervision to monitor withdrawal symptoms. For some people, monitoring is necessary to watch for life-threatening symptoms such as seizures or psychotic episodes, or severe depression.  In this setting, medications can be given to avoid some symptoms.

Medication assisted treatment- Medication assisted treatment combines medication and behavioral therapy. This treatment uses FDA-approved medications that do not impair a person’s mental state. This reduces cravings and allows for behavioral therapy to be most effective. FDA approved medications for opioid substance use therapy include:

The Importance of Finding an Inpatient Rehab in Scottsdale, Arizona

Finishing a detox program is only the beginning of heroin addiction treatment. After someone is past the physical cravings for heroin they can focus on the psychological part of addiction. A person needs to understand why they were using heroin to start with.

Once there is that understanding the drug use behavior can be replaced with healthy behaviors. There are different levels of care based on how much help someone needs.  The best place to explore the options is at an inpatient drug and alcohol rehab center.

What is Inpatient Drug Rehab?

Inpatient treatment centers make a variety of benefits available to those who want to recover from drug and alcohol substance use disorders. Patients reside at a facility full time, they go to therapy, eat in the facility, are assigned a room, and have twenty-four-hour support for the length of their stay.

Most inpatient stays are for twenty-eight days. The amount of time a person stays in rehab is based on needs. The severity of the addiction and the amount of progress influences how long someone may need to stay at an inpatient treatment center.

Types of Addiction Therapy

During an addiction rehab program, there are different types of therapy available to help change behavior patterns. The course of therapy treatment is individualized to meet each person’s needs. Some types of therapy are:

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) helps patients recognize negative thought patterns, stop the thoughts, and replace them with healthy thoughts.  This focuses on the present rather than on memories and the past. CBT can be helpful for those that struggle with anxiety, depression, and need to improve self-control.
  • Dialectical Behavioral therapy Dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT) helps an individual manage strong emotions or stressful situations in a healthy way. DBT was originally created to help those with borderline personality disorder. DBT includes one on one therapy, group therapy, and as-needed coaching over the phone.
  • Experiential Therapy- Experiential therapy tries to bring out deep inner lying problems through events other than standard talk therapy.  This works by engaging in activities to bring out emotions that could be attached to subconscious issues. There is a variety of activities that could be used, and it depends on what might work for each individual patient.  Activities can include, but are not limited to creating art such as painting or sculpting, listening to music or writing songs, hiking, dancing, role-playing, horseback riding.
  • The Matrix Model The Matrix Model was originally created for helping stimulant (meth and cocaine) abusers achieve abstinence. Patients learn about addiction and relapse, receive direction and support from trained therapists. Patients are monitored for drug use by urine testing. The therapist is a teacher and a coach, reinforcing positive behavior change. Treatment pulls from other tested treatments including relapse prevention, family and group therapy, drug education, and self-help participation.

What are the Advantages of Going to Inpatient Treatment?

An inpatient treatment center has the highest rate of long-term success for those with heroin addiction. An inpatient treatment center provides a comfortable and organized environment for recovery. This allows a person time away from daily stressors so they can focus on behavior changes.

Inside the treatment center, a person is surrounded by support from other residents, counselors, and medical staff. Negative influences and distractions are kept at bay, and there is freedom from outside relapse triggers.

Types of Heroin Outpatient Therapy Rehab in Scottsdale, Arizona

Outpatient rehab is a good choice for people who have gone through an inpatient program. During outpatient therapy, people can continue to work on skills learned during inpatient therapy sessions. The longer an addict works on therapy the better chance they have to stay sober. Types of outpatient programs include:

  • Partial hospitalization programs- (PHPs) This type of program is the most intense outpatient program. It is sometimes called a day treatment program. These programs meet five to seven days a week for several hours a day. Afterward, the patient returns home.
  • Intensive Outpatient Programs- (IOP) this style of outpatient treatment can be good for people who do not have co-occurring disorders but need more than a once-a-week counseling session.  IOPs usually meet three to four times a week for approximately three hours at a time. The primary focus is group therapy, but individual counseling is available if needed.
  • Traditional Outpatient Therapy- This is the least restrictive type of therapy. Patients can meet with a counselor once a week or several times a week depending on the amount of care they need. This is usually best for someone who has already been through more involved therapy and could still benefit from counseling sessions.

Long-Term Rehab Programs

Long-term rehab is a little different from an inpatient program. Sometimes a 28 day stay at an inpatient facility is not long enough for a recovering addict. Long-term rehab is set up like a home and people can stay for several months. During this time they continue to work on recovery. The therapy is on-site, and people do not work an outside job at the same time.

Scottsdale Heroin Addiction Treatment – Aftercare

When a person has finished detox and inpatient or outpatient rehab, they still need to work on themselves, so they do not go back to drug use. The National Institute on Drug Abuse says treatment that is less than 90 days is not very effective. There are some different ways to extend aftercare.

One option is to go to a sober living home. Here people live with other recovering addicts. They are often required to pay for rent, food, and utilities, so they need to have a job. To stay they are also required to go to outpatient therapy, but that is not offered in the home. Occasional drug tests may be necessary. Drugs or alcohol are not permitted in the house.

Another option for continuing care would be a 12-step program. These programs like Narcotics Anonymous are peer-led support group meetings. There is no professional therapy, but it is beneficial to help someone stay drug-free.

What is a Relapse?

A relapse is a return to behaviors and substance use that occurred before someone had substance use treatment. A relapse can happen to anyone, it is important to recognize the signs.

Relapse warning signs include spending time with people previously associated with substance use, increased stress, or anxiety, spending less time with people assisting in recovery efforts.

Is Inpatient Treatment Covered by Insurance?

Yes, inpatient rehab – as well as other forms of treatment – is required by law to be covered by insurance. This was established by the Affordable Care Act, (ACA) is a health care reform law signed in March 2010. Coverage is different with each health insurance policy. People should check their policy to see how much treatment will be covered.

Do You Need More Information About Heroin Addiction Treatment in Scottsdale, Arizona?

At SpringBoard Arizona, we want to help people recover from Heroin addiction. It is hard to beat addiction without support. SpringBoard Arizona can make a difference. If you or a loved one need help, please contact us today.


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