Black tar heroin is extremely addictive and can be abused in a way that leads to severe addiction, painful withdrawal, fatal overdose, and multiple health problems.
It gets its name from how it appears as a brown or dark black substance with a thick, sticky consistency resembling roofing tar. It may also be hard and look like a chunk of coal. Unlike white, powdered heroin, this form is unrefined.
Comprehensive treatment for addiction to the drug often includes both detox and rehab. By receiving treatment for the physical and psychological addiction, a person has a better chance of obtaining long-term sobriety.
Black Tar Heroin Abuse Signs And Symptoms
Heroin is an extremely potent opioid drug, and because of this, a person may have an intense craving to use it after only trying it once. When use becomes compulsive, many individuals continue to use even after it begins hurting them physically or mentally.
As black tar heroin abuse accelerates into addiction, the quality of a person’s life can rapidly go downhill. A person will often ignore important responsibilities in their life, such as those that regard their family, relationships, or job.
Once a person is addicted, they will likely have the following signs and symptoms:
- Tolerance: When a person takes their normal dose they do not feel the pleasurable effects they seek. This often leads to higher dosing.
- Dependence: Regular use causes the body to become reliant on black tar heroin, and without it, the body cannot function normally.
- Withdrawal: A person who is dependent will likely experience uncomfortable and even painful withdrawal symptoms if they quit cold turkey.
Black Tar Heroin Short-Term Effects
Though a person may smoke black tar heroin, impure heroin is commonly dissolved and diluted for injection. It may also be injected into a vein, into a muscle, or under the skin.
Due to its potency, black tar heroin’s effects are felt quite rapidly. This is especially true if it is injected.
As these feel-good effects set in, a person may also experience the following short-term effects of black tar heroin:
- clouded thoughts
- dry mouth
- intense itching
- legs and arms feel heavy
- nausea and vomiting
- warm, flushed skin
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Black Tar Heroin Long-Term Effects
Using black tar heroin only once can be dangerous, however, the long-term effects it produces on the brain and body can be severe.
The physical and mental long-term effects of black tar heroin include:
- brain damage
- hormonal problems
- sexual dysfunction (for men)
Black tar heroin can make a person’s health decline and immune system weaken. Paired with the respiratory depression that accompanies heroin abuse, these states may lead to tuberculosis and certain types of pneumonia.
Black Tar Heroin Overdose Signs And Symptoms
While overdoses aren’t always fatal, they have potential to be. The first dose of this potent drug may cause overdose or an addicted person may overdose on it after abusing it for many years.
Signs and symptoms of a black tar heroin overdose include:
- faint heartbeat
- intestinal or stomach spasms
- low blood pressure
- pinpoint pupils
- tongue discoloration
Calling emergency medical services as soon as a heroin overdose is suspected could save a life. If administered soon enough, the opioid overdose reversal drug Narcan (naloxone) could reverse an overdose before it becomes fatal.
Black Tar Heroin Withdrawal Signs And Symptoms
When a person begins to withdrawal from the drug they may feel sick and have flu-like symptoms.
Signs and symptoms of black tar heroin withdrawal include:
- cold flashes with goosebumps
- bone and muscle pain
- intense cravings
- leg movements
A person may also have gastrointestinal problems, such as diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting.
Black Tar Heroin Withdrawal And Detox Programs
The aim of a medical detox program is to stabilize a person while their body begins to cleanse the drug from its system. To help ensure that a person is as safe and as comfortable as possible, 24-hour care and supervision is provided.
Medications can be an important component of a detox program. Medications that contain buprenorphine, such as Suboxone, work to reduce withdrawal symptoms, so that person can begin preparing for the next stage of treatment.
The use of medications is frequently paired with behavioral therapies to help a person maintain abstinence from black tar heroin.
Finding A Black Tar Heroin Drug Rehab Program
While outpatient treatment for black tar heroin addiction does exist, a residential or inpatient program is often recommended due to how severe addiction can be.
An inpatient drug rehab program treats the psychological addiction. Residential treatment programs provide a higher level of support for the emotional, mental, behavioral, and social elements of addiction.
Counseling and behavioral therapies, such as dialectical behavioral therapy, can help a person manage their thoughts, behaviors, and emotions in a healthy and positive way.
The best residential treatment programs offer individualized treatment that is built around each client’s needs. When rehab is tailored to a client’s specific needs and recovery goals, they have a better chance of building long-lasting sobriety.
Reach out to Vertava Health today for information on black tar heroin addiction and treatment options.