10 Signs of Heroin Addiction

heroin addiction

Many heroin users inject the drug and may have arms that look like this.

Heroin is a highly addictive street drug that literally can ruin a user’s life in a matter of days. After just a single dose of heroin, the body adjusts to the drug and craves more. According to the University of Wisconsin-Madison, University Health Services, users can experience withdrawal symptoms after just 72 hours of heroin use. Repeat use is often responsible for strong physical dependence, intense cravings and severe withdrawal symptoms.

If you suspect that someone you know may be suffering from heroin addiction, consider the following signs that help is needed:

  1. Needle Marks – heroin addicts inject the drug using transdermal needles. The needles are responsible for track or needle marks on the arms, legs or other areas of the body. These marks may become inflamed or infected and appear as boils or deep tissue infections beneath the skin.
  2. Isolation – heroin addiction is often responsible for extreme isolation from others. As the addict dives deeper into a state of addiction, isolation from friends and family members becomes more common and noticeable.
  3. Withdrawal Symptoms – one of the most evident signs of heroin addiction is the withdrawal symptoms that a user will experience when he or she is not taking the drug. Symptoms can include nausea and vomiting, diarrhea, anxiety, tension and anger.
  4. Tolerance – repeat heroin use can quickly lead to an increase in tolerance to the drug. The user will soon require excessively larger doses or more frequent doses in order to curb withdrawal symptoms and keep cravings at bay.
  5. Excessive Spending – overspending or suffering from unexplainable financial struggles is one of the first signs of heroin addiction that friends or family members will notice. The user often spends all of his or her money on drugs and cannot explain the reason for their financial struggles.
  6. Overdose – increasing tolerance to the drug will often lead an addict to overdose.
  7. Disease – HIV, AIDs and other infectious diseases are common in people who suffer from heroin addiction. Such diseases result from sharing needles, promiscuous or unsafe sex and similar behaviors.
  8. Changes in Sleep Patterns – one of the earliest signs of heroin addiction is related to the heavy sleep that user’s generally take part in.
  9. Lack of Interest in Hobbies – heroin addiction will cause a user to feel no desire to take part in activities that were once fun. As the user becomes more heavily addicted, he or she will care less and less about hobbies.
  10. Preoccupied – a sure sign of heroin addiction is the preoccupation that comes with this disease. The user will focus much of his or her time on finding, using and recovering from the drug use. This process is repeated over and over again as the drug use essentially consumes the user’s life.