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Heroin Facts
There are approximately 84,000 heroin addiction related visits to emergency rooms in the United States yearly and about 3% - 7% of treated patients require admission for pneumonia, collection of fluid in the lungs, and other complications.
The individual who has become physically as well as psychologically dependent on heroin will experience heroin addiction withdrawal with an abrupt discontinuation of use or even a decrease in their daily amount of heroin taken.
When sold at street level heroin is likely to have been diluted or cut with a variety of similar powders. The main dilution is glucose. However, the practice of using other substances such as caffeine, flour and talcum powder is a constant danger to users
Heroin in its pure form is a white powder which is easily soluble in water.

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Drug Abuse Symptoms Effects

Many people who don't think of themselves as drug abusers can become dependent on chemical substances, either legal or illegal. They experience symptoms related to their drug abuse. Many find that theses symptoms are worse than the pain they are trying to hide.

Use and abuse of drugs and alcohol by teens is very common and can have serious consequences. In the 15-24 year age range, 50% of deaths (from accidents, homicides, suicides) involve alcohol or drug abuse. Drugs and alcohol also contribute to physical and sexual aggression such as assault or rape.

Possible stages of teenage experience with alcohol and drugs include abstinence (non-use), experimentation, regular use (both recreational and compensatory for other problems), abuse, and dependency. Repeated and regular recreational use can lead to other problems like anxiety and depression. Some teenagers regularly use drugs or alcohol to compensate for anxiety, depression, or a lack of positive social skills.

  • Below is a listing of general symptoms related with common drugs of abuse
    • Marijuana
      -Possible symptoms: Increased heart rate, bloodshot eyes, dry mouth and throat and an increased appetite.
    • Cocaine
      -Possible symptoms: Dilated pupils; elevated blood pressure, heart and respiratory rates and body temperature; occasional use may cause runny or stuffy nose.
    • Methamphetamine
      -Possible symptoms: Increased heart and respiratory rates, dilated pupils, decreased appetite, sweating, headaches, blurred vision, dizziness, sleeplessness, and anxiety.
    • Depressants (such as barbiturates)
      -Possible symptoms: Calmness and relaxed muscles, slurred speech, staggering gait. Very large doses can cause coma or death. If taken with alcohol, the results could be deadly.
    • Hallucinogens ( such as LSD)
      -Possible symptoms: Vary depending on the specific drug taken. PCP (angel dust) blocks pain receptors, and self-inflicted injuries can occur. Symptoms of LSD, mescaline, and psilocybin include dilated pupils, elevated temperature, increased heart rate, high blood pressure, loss of appetite, sleeplessness, and tremors.
    • Narcotics (such as heroin)
      -Possible symptoms: Constricted pupils, watery eyes and itching. An initial feeling of euphoria followed by drowsiness, nausea and vomiting. Overdoses produce slow and shallow breathing, clammy skin, convulsions.
    • Designer drugs (man-made in underground labs)
      -Possible symptoms: The symptoms of designer drugs do not necessarily mimic the symptoms of the drugs they're supposed to imitate. These man-made drugs are so powerful they can produce a wide range of symptoms. The effects of artificial narcotics, for example, can mimic the effects of Parkinson's disease: uncontrollable tremors, drooling, impaired speech, paralysis and irreversible brain damage. "Designer" versions of amphetamines and methamphetamines can produce nausea, blurred vision, chills or sweating.
  • Worried that your child might have a problem with drugs or alcohol? Below is a list of common drug abuse symptoms.
    • SOCIAL
      o Changing several friends or changing peer groups
      o Suddenly popular with friends who are older and unknown to family
      o Becoming involved with peers when formerly isolated from peers
      o More frequent phone calls
      o Social activities occurring more often, sometimes at odd hours
      o Thrill seeking behaviors - evidenced by law breaking, promiscuity, and other dangerous physical situations

    • FAMILY
      o Isolation from family members (hiding in room, locking bedroom door) and avoiding family activities
      o Exhibiting negative attitude toward rules and parents
      o Failing to follow through on promises
      o Sneaking out of the house
      o Becoming manipulative
      o Lying

    • SCHOOL
      o Lacking motivation and lower grades
      o Sleeping in class
      o Skipping class or school
      o Dropping out of school activities
      o Becoming disrespectful of teachers, administrators, and rules
      o Frequently being disciplined
      o Suspended or Expelled

      o Smelling of alcohol, marijuana or stale smoke
      o Frequent minor illnesses (headaches, nausea, slight tremors, flu-like symptoms, vomiting, sluggishness)
      o Neglects taking prescribed medications or takes more medications than usual
      o Memory lapses
      o Weight changes or unusual eating patterns (types of foods, amounts, time of day)
      o Frequent use of eye drops for bloodshot eyes
      o Change in normal sleep patterns (more or less than usual, frequent naps)
      o Injuries occurring more often
      o Frequent infections or infections which don't heal
      o More frequent complaints of pain or illness

    • LEGAL
      o Shoplifting or stealing from family members
      o Unruly behaviors like skipping school and not following family rules
      o Incidents or Charges for Public Intoxication, DUI, Vandalism, Breaking and Entering, Underage Use)
      o Involved in car accidents or near misses
      o Selling drugs

      o Impaired judgment (putting self in dangerous situations)
      o Talking about or attempting suicide
      o Violent or threatening (verbally or physically)
      o Lethargic or apathetic
      o Mood swings
      o Burned Out
      o Operating at an inappropriate maturity level


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