Heroin

what is heroin?

Heroin is the most abundant and the most rapidly acting of opiate based drugs.  It is processed from morphine, a natural occurring substance extracted from the Asian opium poppy plant.  It is classified as a Schedule I drug—the group of the most highly addictive drugs—in the U.S.  It is typically sold as a white or brownish powder or as the black sticky substance known as “black tar heroin.”

Commonly referred to as Dope, Smack, Horse, Mud, Big H and Black Tar.

HOW IS HEROIN USED?

Heroin is injected, smoked or snorted.  All these methods can lead to addiction and other severe health problems. 

HEROIN IN HAWAII & the U.S.

Heroin is increasingly available in Hawaii. Mexican black tar is the most prevalent form of heroin and is widely available.

  • 3.4% of Hawai'i high school students have used heroin at least once in their lifetime.
  • In 2014, 61% of drug overdose deaths involved some type of opioid, including heroin.
  • 4.8 million people have used heroin at some point in their lives.

HEALTH RISKS

Heroin is extremely addictive. Heroin abuse is associated with serious health problems.  Most common conditions include fatal overdoses, spontaneous abortions, and infectious diseases including HIV/AIDS and hepatitis.

signs of heroin overdoes:

Shallow breathing, clammy skin, seizures, coma, bluish skin, fingernails and or/ lips.

Sources: www.drugabuse.gov; www.streetdrugs.org; www.sayno.com; NIDA Community Drug Alert Bulletin on Heroin, www.nida.nih.gov; Drug Enforcement Administration, www.usdoj.gov., http://www.addictionsandrecovery.org/opiates-narcotics-recovery.htm