HEROIN – It’s time to end this Toxic relationship
From the seemingly innocent poppy seeds comes the not so seemingly innocent heroin, a potent controlled substance. The illicit drug is on the rise in the US and especially in urban areas among the 18-25 age groups according to the National Institute of Drug Abuse.
Being similar to Percocet and OxyContin, Heroin shares many characteristics with two of the strongest pain killers available over-the-counter. It’s also a derivative of morphine and gives users access to a feeling of complete euphoria by attacking the ventral tegmental area, otherwise known as the brains reward center.
The drug is usually injected which means a quick delivery straight to the brain as the production of happy chemicals such as dopamine and endorphins are increased.
How long does heroin stay in your system?
Apart from the high being intense and very addictive, its effects can last for 4-5 hours after one dose. Its half-life however, which refers to how long it takes for the concentration of heroin in the blood to the halved, is roughly 30 minutes after consuming. Even though heroin isn’t a long-lasting drug, it does have a lengthier half-life due to the fact it gets broken down by the body into morphine. This can mean it has a half life of around 3.6 hours.
If heroin is to reach its peak level in your blood quicker, it will depend on how it’s administered. Injections have a quicker release into the bloodstream and therefore a quick delivery to the brain. When we are talking about the length of time heroin remains in the body, it differs depending on which part of the body we talk about. Here are the specifics:
- How long does heroin stay in your blood?
Heroin has a shorter half-life so passes through the blood stream fairly quickly. If an individual taking heroin was given a blood test then would usually be clear within a day after using the drug. This is often why urine tests are taken to test traces accurately within a longer time-frame.
- How long does heroin stay in your hair?
The drug can be found in hair samples for a minimum of 90 days after consuming. The length of hair along with the amount taken will affect whether traces of heroin can be found after an extended period of time.
- How long does heroin stay in your urine?
Traces of heroin can be found in urinalysis tests anywhere between 1-2 days after consumption. It’s important to remember that the substance can be found when a higher dosage is taken or if someone is a long-term abuser.
What effects the time heroin is in your body?
There are several things that can either lengthen or shorten the amount of time the drug stays in your system. These can be:
- Height & Weight
An individual’s size can have a big impact on how long it takes for them to feel the high and how long it takes until the body eliminates the substance. For example, the smaller you are the more time the drug will linger in your system and the longer it will be detectable in the body.
- How much heroin has been taken
The doses strength and quality can be other important factors effecting how quickly heroin gets metabolized. The higher the dose and the stronger the potency, the longer it will circulate around your body. On the contrary, heroin mixed with other additives may be cheaper but due to the unknown ingredients, the total time it spends in the system can be variable.
The speed of someone’s metabolism also plays a fundamental role in the breaking down of heroin in the body. Someone with a quicker metabolism, possibly due to a good fitness regime or genes, will eliminate traces of heroin quicker. The reasoning behind this is that the system is more efficient at handling and metabolizing toxins in less time when detoxifying the body.
What testing methods are in place for Heroin?
This drug is metabolized quicker than most, meaning it won’t linger in the system for too long. However, each individual’s unique make-up will alter how long the substance takes to be metabolized. Currently, heroin screening has a variety of methods which may include retrieving blood, urine or hair samples.
The time it takes for heroin to be eliminated will influence how long it takes before the drug is no longer traced in tests. The FDA approved tests for heroin include tests for saliva, hair, blood and urine.
Advanced ways of testing are being developed which can detect the drug even longer after the consumption. These tests usually look for traces of heroin metabolites (the broken down molecules produced when the liver digests the drug) which linger for longer in the system.
Generally, heroin can’t be detected in urine past 2 days after consumption. As blood and saliva testing methods aren’t commonly used for heroin due to its short half-life, the main test that provides accurate results for more than a week is the hair test. Testing hair follicles can trace heroin for up to 3 months or even more.
How to clear your system of heroin quickly
You are probably well aware now that answering the question’ how long does heroin stay in your system’ is by no means concrete. It depends on a number of factors and chances are what may work for one person may not be as effective for another.
There are ways however, which can speed up the rate your system clears heroin from your body. These tips aren’t there to make it easier to cheat drug test results by any means. They are helpful when you want to return your body back to a healthy state of homeostasis and balance.
- Don’t be tempted to try any more: if you think you can get away with taking a small dose after the main one and it won’t make a difference, think again. Its best to stop using the drug straight away as taking it more often will slow down the body’s metabolizing process making it stay in your system for longer. Then if you use it again and the rest hasn’t cleared, you risk the accumulation of heroin in fat tissues.
- Flush the body with water: drinking lots of water will flush out the toxins and metabolites from the substance and keep you hydrated. It’s best to stay away from alcoholic/soda drinks and sugary juices whilst you are detoxing.
- Engage in a light form of workout: depending on the amount you have taken and whether you are on withdrawal, you won’t want to overload your system with too much hard work. Therefore adding a light jog or frequent walks can speed up the cleansing process by maintaining optimum blood flow and increasing your metabolism. Along with boosting circulation, it all helps your body clear itself of heroin. When you work out you are also burning fat which may include the build-up of accumulated heroin.
- Taking supplements: supplements that help you process heroin quicker can be useful in taking. Others which facilitate the healthy functioning of the kidney and liver such as Milk Thistle are also helpful when you’re detoxing.
- Maintaining a healthy diet: staying clear of the junk and fast foods will do your body the world of good. These foods are packed with additives and artificial sweeteners which put your digestive system under strain. You want fresh foods, lots of veggies and foods that up your intake of nutrients and antioxidants.
- Detoxing the body: seeking professional help and advice may be the best thing if you have a troubled track-record with heroin. To help ease the withdrawal effects when coming off the substance, a residential or outpatient service such as BLVD will help.
Need a helping hand?
If you want to quit heroin and the devastating effects it’s having on your life for good, our BLVD Treatment Centers offer both residential and outpatient services. With the professional and friendly support and of our experienced counselors, you can gain access to:
- Individualized Detox Treatments
- Chef-Prepared Gourmet Meals
- Medically-Assisted Detox
- A Comprehensive Aftercare Plan
- Convenient Transport Services
How Long Does Heroin Stay In Your System?