Women who use heroin face different challenges when it comes to getting clean—just as heroin addiction can show up in different ways for different people. Of course, women who use heroin (smack, junk, dope, H) experience the same effects of addiction as men do: they become physically dependent on smack, unable to function without it, lose interest in the relationships and activities in their lives that don’t revolve around heroin, and eventually resort to doing anything they have to do in order to get their hands on another heroin fix. They suffer the same risks of liver disease, loss of lung function, and overdose—not to mention the risk of infection from sharing needles or using unsterile needles. Needles remain one of the main transmitters of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. But for women, it’s more than that. Female junkies often engage in unsafe sexual acts, either because the heroin impairs their judgment, in exchange for a fix or more money to buy heroin, or because they just don’t care anymore. Being unable to consent while high also puts female users at very high risk of being sexually assaulted or otherwise victimized. Both of these factors, in turn, also increase female heroin addicts’ risk of HIV exposure and pregnancy. Heroin, it should come as no surprise, has extremely negative effects on a developing fetus.
The good news is that it’s possible to get help. If you’re pregnant, this is especially important. Quitting cold turkey causes withdrawal, which is an extremely difficult and unpleasant state the body goes into when it is cut off from a drug on which it is dependent. Symptoms include muscle and bone pain, nausea, rashes, headaches, psychological symptoms, and more. Addicts who are in very poor health can even die from withdrawal symptoms if they are not receiving proper medical care. For pregnant women, it’s important to know that withdrawal can also affect your fetus. Fetuses also suffer from withdrawal, and untreated, withdrawal can cause a miscarriage. But the fetus can recover if you are properly treated with a drug called methadone, which is used to help wean heroin addicts off of heroin.
If you’re ready to stop using heroin, the safest and most effective way to get clean is in an accredited drug and alcohol rehabilitation center such as Archstone Recovery Center of the Palm Beaches, located in Lantana, Florida. At Archstone Recovery, you’ll receive specialized medical care as you go through the detox process, and our expert counselors and addiction treatment specialists will guide you through a holistic twelve-step approach that cares for you as a whole person, not just a heroin addiction. Heroin addicts from New York (NY), New Jersey (NJ), Washington, DC, Philadelphia (PA), Baltimore (MD), Florida (FL), New England, and all over the United States come to Archstone Recovery to get clean and stay clean. If you’re ready to take the first step, fill out the contact form and get in touch with Archstone Recovery today.