Heroin is described as being an opiate that’s converted from morphine that comes from the Asian opium poppy plant. It is a drug that is severely addictive and can leave the user suffering from serious health issues. Some health conditions related to the repeated use of heroin include infections in the heart valves and lining, bacterial infections, rheumatologic issues, collapsed veins and other infectious diseases like HIV. However, many times the user is not the only person affected, as entire families usually suffer the effects of heroin addiction both financially and mentally.
Health Consequences suffered by Heroin Users
As described by Dr. Jenny Keen and associates, children born to heroin users show more developmental delays than children whose parents do not use heroin. These children usually have low health status’, and need health services more frequently than kids of non-using parents. Additionally, they are at a higher risk of being abused by their parents in some way. This also works when it is a child who is using heroin, and not a parent; the other family members can develop health issues. This can be due to the fact other members of the family neglect taking care of themselves as they focus all their energy on helping the user. Furthermore, the non-stop stress will increase the risk of other stress related conditions such as migraines, digestive issues, heart problems and high blood pressure.
The Financial Burden of Heroin
A heroin addiction costs a lot to fund, as it is very expensive. Most people who are hooked on heroin need a fix every couple hours. So, many times those addicted to this drug lose their jobs. This means that in order to fund their habit, they will begin selling everything they have of value, in exchange for cash or heroin. Furthermore, when they become desperate they will begin to steal what they need from other family members. Going back to the health consequences of heroin, they can become rather costly, as well; thus, adding more financial burden to the rest of the family.
The Mental Effects of Heroin
According to experts, the members of a heroin user’s family will go through many different emotions. They may still be in denial about the problem, and blame both the user and themselves, thus causing them to isolate themselves from society. Other members of the family usually feel depressed and helpless, as they continue to try to help the person addicted to heroin. One study was focused on teenage heroin users, and what they reported was that the on-going usage of the drug caused the parents to harbor feelings of betrayal and loss of trust. Finally, family relations will begin to decay, and some parents even consider committing suicide.