Heroin Addiction, the signs and symptoms to watch for

Are you asking yourself how to stop taking heroin? Are you experiencing heroin withdrawal symptoms? Or are you concerned that a loved one may be suffering from heroin addiction? Most suffering from heroin addiction cannot stop without help.

About Heroin Addiction

Heroin is a highly addictive, illegal drug. It is used by millions of addicts around the world who are unable to overcome the urge to continue taking this drug every day of their lives. Knowing that if they stop, they will face the horror of withdrawal. The most common forms of heroin in Ireland are white powder and brown rock which can be injected, smoked or snorted. Most heroin is injected, creating additional risks for the user, who faces the danger of AIDS or other infection on top of the pain of addiction. Common names for heroin include smack, gear and dope.

Signs of Heroin Addiction

When heroin use becomes a priority, a person’s entire universe shifts to revolve around this drug. Despite the many problems heroin use causes, a person who addicted will continue to use heroin. There are signs you can look for that will help you identify a case of a heroin addiction.

  • Thoughts of heroin consume your day
  • You find yourself looking for new ways of getting heroin
  • Frequently worry you won’t have access to heroin during your day
  • Heroin is affecting your job, finances and or relationships
  • You get upset when questioned about your heroin use
  • Willing to go to great lengths to get heroin
  • You must regularly increase your heroin intake to achieve the same feeling.

If you are concerned about a loved one rather than yourself, signs to look for include:

  • Unreasonable sensitivity when the topic of heroin is discussed
  • Used needles lying around the house
  • Bags of white powder or brown rock lying around the house for their next hit (full or empty)
  • Burnt foils or spoons around the house
  • Unexplained withdrawal from family relationships or friendships
  • Social withdrawal
  • Lack of concern for employment
  • Financial problems
  • Mood swings
  • Unexplained weight loss or gain

Any combination of signs or symptoms that suggest a potential heroin addiction should not be ignored. As mentioned, even a minor heroin misuse problem can quickly become an addiction if left untreated. The good news is that proper treatment is very effective at helping heroin addicts completely recover. Success is achieved through a combination of physical, emotional, social and psychological treatments that address every aspect of addiction.

Effects of Heroin Abuse

There are three likely outcomes once someone begins using heroin.

  • Addiction is marked by increased effort and energy assigned to getting and using the drug even when problems from use have resulted.
  • Tolerance is indicated by the need for more of the substance, higher purity, or different methods of delivery to feel the same results.
  • Dependence is when your body requires heroin to feel normal and withdrawal symptoms present without the substance in your body.

Abuse of heroin can lead to unwanted social effects like troubled relationships, being fired from work, financial worries, and legal issues. Also, heroin use is linked to many long-term health consequences like:

  • Increased risk of infectious diseases including HIV/AIDS and hepatitis.
  • Persistent mental health issues such as depression and personality changes.
  • Reproductive issues like sexual dysfunction and inconsistent menstrual cycles.
  • Damage to the septum and nose tissues from snorting.

Withdrawal Symptoms

If you regularly use heroin, your body needs to learn to work without the drug which causes withdrawal symptoms. Withdrawal symptoms are the various physical and psychological effects of detox and can occur after reducing or stopping heroin use.


  • One in four people who try heroin become dependent on it
  • Accidental overdose is very common with heroin as users don’t know the purity level of the drug


At Tabor Group, we provide a safe and calm environment for people in need of heroin treatment. Tabor Group has a long and successful history treating heroin addicts with proven heroin treatment programs.

Remember it can be difficult to convince a loved one that they need treatment for their heroin addiction, if you’ve tried to talk to a friend or family member about their drug taking habits and they’ve been resistant, you should consider a Family Intervention . Contact us for advice on this process as we have useful resources and can support you through to conducting the intervention.

If you have a loved one suffering from an addiction to Alcohol, Drugs, Gambling or Food get help today. Don’t hesitate to contact one of our counsellors at +353 (21) 488 7110 or Email Us we are here to help

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