Chances are that you’ve already heard of heroin as the opioid crisis continues to envelop the United States. In this article, we will try to find out the roots of heroid and where does it come from?
Heroin: The Facts
Heroin is primarily a street drug. According to the NIH, the drug is made from the seed pod of the opium poppy plant. It is derived from the drug known as morphine and poppy plant is made in regions such as Southeast and Southwest Asia, Mexico and Columbia.
To understand how it came to be, we have to understand the origins of morphine. It was used by doctors to ease the pain. As morphine changes the way our brain perceives pain, it can help relieve the same.
Heroin was first derived by an English chemist back in 1874 from heroin. It was produced commercially by Bayer Pharmaceutical Co. It was primarily produced as a substitute for morphine as the former was being misused. Later it was found out that heroin was addictive and was subsequently banned in the USA.
The DEA has stated that heroin is usually found in brown powder or black tar heroin. It is often mixed with other drugs or substances such as sugar or powdered milk. Even though it’s illegal, the propensity of its misuse is high. Many times it is ingested and the user is unable to know the amount ingested, which raises the chances of an overdose.
How is Heroin misused?
Heroin is misused all around the world. After taking it, the user gets a sense of euphoria, happiness and alleviation of any tension. Usually, it is injected, snorted or ingested. People often use the drug with a mixture of ‘crack cocaine’ and the combination is known as ‘speedball’.
In addition to the effects of euphoria, heroin also causes:
- Dry Mouth
- Heaviness in arms and legs
- Coming in and out of consciousness
How are Heroin overdoses treated?
To put it simple, an overdose on heroin can prove to be fatal. It can slow the breathing to a point where the person cannot survive without medical supervision. This is where Naloxone comes in. According to the NIH, naloxone can bring normal back to the person if they have stopped breathing and can reverse the effects of an opioid overdose.