What is the Heroin Recovery Rate?Camila Archuleta
A Closer Look at the Statistics for Opiate Addiction Treatment
A recent spike in drug abuse has many asking this question – what is the heroin recovery rate? The illicit substance has infiltrated communities across the United States from large to small. Heroin addiction leaves utter devastation – overdose injuries and deaths, addicted people, high relapse rates, and an air of depression. Most people see the impact but don’t know how to recover the health of their cities and towns.
At Icarus Behavioral Health in New Mexico, we have also been a front-row spectator to the rise in heroin addiction. Fortunately, we also know how to help people get clean and sober after heroin abuse. We know that a successful recovery for our communities means facing substance use disorder – especially opioids – head-on and helping each person treated achieve long-term sobriety.
We can confidently say that while heroin addiction is widespread and devastating, the heroin addiction recovery rate is not as dismal as you might think. With the help of a well-qualified addiction treatment center, the chances of healing are actually pretty promising.
Read on to learn the real truth about the heroin addiction epidemic and how crafting a good, individualized treatment plan at Icarus in New Mexico can help people turn their lives around after even the most extensive history of substance abuse.
The Heroin Recovery Rate by the Numbers
Let’s start with the bad news – the ballooning number of Americans addicted to heroin or other opioids.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shared research in 2022 that revealed how over a million Americans perished after a drug overdose since 1999. About 645,000 of those people passed away from overdosing on opioid drugs – that includes prescription painkillers, heroin, and fentanyl.
They also note that about 75% of the 106,699 drug overdoses in 2021 occurred after someone took opioids.
Although the CDC data does not further break down overdoses to specify which drugs are causing the most deaths, we can safely say that opioid and heroin addiction has ended far too many lives.
Those statistics only cover fatalities, not the total of heroin users or heroin addicts, which are far greater.
Now let’s talk about the better news – the heroin addiction recovery rate.
A National Public Radio (NPR) article cited a study by the National Institute of Drug Abuse and CDC, which found that 75% of people who experienced drug addiction eventually recovered from their substance use disorders.
Let’s be clear here, many heroin addicts recover and go on to live full, productive, and generally happy lives without the need for opiates.
That’s encouraging news – but it takes commitment to change and, of course, the assistance of our heroin rehab center to help restore lives.
How Does a Heroin Addiction Get Started?
Heroin is very addictive and comes from morphine removed from the seed pod of the opium poppy plant. It’s usually white or brown and powder, but a second kind – black tar heroin – is dark and sticky to the touch. People who use heroin smoke, snort, or inject it into the bloodstream using needles.
When a person uses heroin, it enters the brain quickly and binds to opioid receptors. These receptors send signals of pain or pleasure to the body. They also contribute to one’s heart rate, breathing, and sleeping. The high gives someone who uses it a euphoric feeling, but the effects are relatively short-lived. The body quickly builds a tolerance, and drug cravings start to demand more.
That fast cycle is why heroin addiction is so widespread. Those who use it need it more often and in larger doses within a relatively short time of their first try. It also explains why heroin overdose seems to happen so often.
Our Heroin Treatment Program at Icarus Behavioral Health
Now that you know how the heroin addiction recovery rate is more favorable than imagined, let’s talk about how we treat addictions at Icarus Behavioral Health.
Our therapy team understands that addiction to drugs or alcohol does not exist in a vacuum. Heroin users may also face other problems, such as alcohol use or mental health issues – or all of the above. From the moment clients enter treatment to when they leave our recovery program with a relapse prevention plan, we have one sole focus.
We want every person to have the best chance to stay clean and live a fulfilling life.
Here are some evidence-based treatments we use, customizing each to the client’s needs:
Medical Detoxification and Stabilization
Medical detox is critical, as the withdrawal symptoms can set in quickly. Not only is detoxing in a clinic crucial for preventing relapse, but it’s also the safest way to ensure physical well-being. Withdrawal symptoms from heroin occur quickly and can be dangerous. The level of severity depends on many factors, including:
- How much and often the client used opiates and opioids
- Their physical fitness (i.e., heart disease, diabetes, etc.)
- Stature and size (smaller people metabolize drugs faster)
Regardless of those factors, clinicians will prescribe medications to make this initial phase as painless as possible. Put your anxiety about detoxing from heroin aside – at Icarus in NM you are in capable hands.
Behavioral Therapies to Meet Our Clients’ Needs
Behavioral therapy provides different enrichment activities under the guidance of a licensed professional.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is an individual therapy beneficial for people who struggle with heroin addiction. The treatment is highly customized to suit the client. Participating in CBT helps people identify their triggers for drug use and learn how to change their responses.
Group Therapy That Makes a Difference
Recovering with others who thoroughly understand the challenges of heroin use is very helpful. A skilled counselor leads the process, and participants have open discussions about their addiction experiences, their goals and aspirations, and many other topics.
These activities help clients see the value of building support systems, an important factor that helps them add to that promising heroin addiction recovery rate.
Family Therapy for Clients Who Choose It
Similar to group therapy, families who participate learn how to heal after heroin treatment together. When a loved one struggles with addiction, the whole family is shaken to its core. Families receive information on how to support their loved ones, especially learning how to avoid relapse and rebuild trust.
Dual Diagnosis Options Alongside Addiction Treatment
Treating any other mental disorders is essential for two reasons.
First, a recovery program that only scratches the surface is like applying a bandage to a cut without first applying an antibiotic ointment. We help clients dig deeper, addressing the underlying detriments to their mental well-being.
Second, treating any underlying mental disorder has been proven to reduce relapse rates. If a client uses illicit substances to numb a mental health problem, it’s important that we give them the coping tools they need.
A Proven Heroin Relapse Prevention Plan
Clients leave our facility with a road map to continued success – a heroin relapse plan. Recovery does not end when someone leaves our building – it takes a lifelong commitment to stay the course. Rest assured, the relapse rate can stay low with the right strategies.
For example, we teach clients how to avoid peers they used with as one means to prevent relapse. We also suggest they join Narcotics Anonymous in their local communities.
Get Started on a Path to Recovery from Heroin Today
The addiction recovery rates for heroin are a series of numbers, but we believe in the power of individual success stories as well. But building that new life means tearing down the substance use disorders that are holding you back from recovery. It’s time to make heroin use part of your past and live your best life. Your treatment can start right away.
Are you ready to start this process and end the cycle of heroin abuse? Our team is here to give you the important information and any support or resources you need. Connect with us today, call now and get proven support for heroin recovery at Icarus!