Washington Treatment Centers

Alcohol & Drug Treatment in WA

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Seattle Heroin Addiction

Current statistics state that 3.8 million people, or 1.5 percent of the entire population above 12 years of age, have tried heroin once in their lifetimes, and the problem with heroin is that once can sometimes be all it takes in order to become a heroin addict. Heroin addiction has devastating effects on the users as well as their families and loved ones, and many times heroin addiction can lead to illness, overdose, and death. Seattle was once known as "The Heroin Capital of the World," and a recent article in the Seattle Times stated that the death toll from heroin overdose is once again on the rise. In 2010, the state of Washington made the drug Naloxone, an antidote to heroin overdose that was previously only available to paramedics and emergency room personnel, available by prescription. The problem in Seattle is that many addicts do not realistically have access to this medication when they are in the middle of an overdose, so overdosing and deaths continue to escalate.

Heroin Use in Seattle

Mexican Black Tar heroin is the most widely available form of heroin in Seattle. Heroin use is prevalent in the city and since 2002 has been spreading into the Seattle suburbs as well. The combination of using heroin and crack together is a trend that is on the rise, and users will either smoke or inject the combination of drugs. Heroin sells for $25-$100 per gram, and for an addict, this can become a very expensive habit. While there are functioning addicts who can still manage to hold down a job and make money, the majority of hard core heroin addicts generally lose interest in everything, including work, personal lives, and taking care of their personal hygiene. An addict in this type of situation may end up committing robbery, stealing money and expensive items from family and loved ones, or possibly prostituting themselves in order to get the money they need for their addiction.

With the implementation of needle exchange programs, heroin addicts are not catching fatal diseases and bacterial infections as much as it was reported in the late 1980's and 1990's, but the risk for death by overdose is still high. And just because a heroin addict may be using clean needles, this does not always mean that they are taking care of themselves physically, and they may use the same needles on themselves repeatedly, which can mean subjecting themselves to staph infections which, if not treated properly, can lead to the loss of limbs, serious illness, and death.

Seattle Treatment Programs

The best thing a heroin addict can do to save themselves from further destruction is check into a treatment program as soon as possible. Many times when addicts are arrested for possession or dealing, the judge will give them an alternate sentence that requires the completion of an inpatient drug treatment program. The Harborview Medical Center in Seattle offers drug treatment programs on an outpatient basis, as well as recovery groups for recent offenders. By following the treatment program, recovery is possible. It is extremely important for addicts and recovering addicts to stay away from potential triggers. This means deleting all drug contacts from their cell phones, attending daily or even twice daily Narcotics Anonymous meetings, and working with their sponsors. By making the decision to recover and following the steps of a specified treatment program, recovery is possible, and individuals with a heroin addiction can move on to live happy and healthy lives.



Addiction Helpline
Treatment Professional1-877-421-3038