It’s all too easy to get addicted to heroin. Then, inevitably, you realize that you’ve made a horrible mistake, and you want to be free of that addiction. If you’re hoping to get yourself clean and sober, you’re no doubt wondering whether heroin detox is going to be painful. Furthermore, you’re probably dreading the pain you’ll have to endure, even if you’re convinced that getting clean is absolutely what you want to do.
The short answer to your question: Yes, heroin withdrawal is likely to be at least somewhat painful. You will be best equipped to handle the pain if you seek professional help to get through it. Not everyone experiences agonizing pain when detoxing from heroin, but the majority of people do feel at least some level of discomfort.
However, there’s good news, too. There are scientifically validated strategies you can use for easing the withdrawal pains and successfully getting yourself through the experience. The pain isn’t so bad when you consider that it is really the main obstacle standing between you and your freedom. In the end, if you really want to be free, you’ll see that it’s worth just getting the pain over and done with so you can get on with your life. You can do this!
Here’s the lowdown on heroin withdrawal and the coping strategies you can use for getting through it.
What You Need to Know About Heroin Withdrawal Symptoms
Sometimes the pain associated with heroin detox is relatively mild and comes in the form of muscle aches, cold sweats, runny nose or diarrhea. Nausea and vomiting are other common heroin withdrawal symptoms. Sometimes the pain is more severe and is accompanied by tremors and seizures. Professional medical attention is advisable in the case of severe symptoms — which is why it’s best to seek outside help if you are planning to detox from heroin. Be aware that you don’t have to go through this alone.
Heroin withdrawal isn’t just physically painful; it’s also mentally challenging. It’s likely that you will experience strong emotions while detoxing from heroin. You might feel depressed, nervous, anxious, paranoid or uneasy. It’s also common to feel helpless, like you’ve lost all control of the situation — or to go through dramatic mood swings that leave you feeling exhausted. You’re also likely to experience intense heroin cravings.
If you start to feel these emotions while you’re going through heroin withdrawal, no matter how unpleasant the situation is, you can congratulate yourself that you are exactly on track with your detox experience. Awful as they may be, these sorts of feelings are totally normal and expected when you’re detoxing from heroin.
For some heroin addicts, these mental challenges can be the hardest part of the withdrawal process. They could possibly drag on for a long time. The mood swings, anxious feelings and drug cravings can even persist long after the physical withdrawal symptoms have ceased.
It’s also possible that you might find yourself unable to sleep while you are going through withdrawal. It’s common for heroin addicts to have insomnia during the detox process.
How to Get Through Heroin Withdrawal as Painlessly as Possible
Scientific research has revealed some promising herbal remedies and dietary supplements that may be able to help you get through opioid withdrawals:
- St. John’s Wort — St. John’s Wort herb is an over-the-counter remedy that has been clinically tested as a depression aid. Researchers have determined that it appears to be effective for this purpose. If you’re experiencing depression or anxiety as a result of your heroin withdrawal, this herb may prove to be a helpful coping mechanism.
- Nigella Sativa — According to researchers at the Department of Pharmacology, Fatima Jinnah Dental College, Karachi, Nigella Sativa is an effective remedy for decreasing opioid drug withdrawal symptoms.
- Rosemary and Rosemary Extract — Researchers at Iran’s Mashhad University of Medical Sciences conducted experiments on morphine-addicted rats. Their results indicated that rosemary extract appeared to diminish the withdrawal symptoms that the rats were suffering. It’s unclear if rosemary extract would be as beneficial to heroin-addicted humans. Considering that rosemary is a safe, affordable and readily available culinary herb, it’s easy enough to try adding it to your diet to see if it could help you, too.
These remedies are likely to be helpful, but it isn’t wise to rely on them alone. It’s ideal if you can use remedies like these in conjunction with a good heroin detox program.
Ready to reclaim your freedom? Call our counselors at 833-610-1174 to get the help you need.