Heroin Addiction’s Toll on the Family

sadFamily members of heroin addicts oftentimes find themselves completely lost and hopeless at defeating the disease. They have watch as their loved one makes reckless decisions with their life, lies, steals, cheats, and, more than ever, may die from a heroin overdose.

While all this is taking place the addict is barely cognizant of how much their drug use is hurting those around them. They are numb to feeling anything, and their thoughts are overridden with wanting their next fix. One reporter recently wrote an article attempting to explain just how horrific losing someone to a heroin addiction really is. In her piece in the Huffington Post, Alicia Cook urges others to come forward and prove that families who have lost someone to a heroin addiction or those that know someone struggling with a heroin addiction are more common than anyone thinks.

“I have never used heroin, but I love someone who did. Addiction has such a large ripple effect, the collateral damage is immense, and what is hit the most and the hardest by heroin’s shrapnel is the family, the loved ones,” explained Cook.

Sometimes families and loved ones are slow to realize that someone they care about is abusing heroin, or are possibly just in denial. Understanding the signs of drug abuse are important and can make the difference between handling the problem quickly or allowing it to drag on and become much more difficult to solve.

Some signs to watch out for include sudden weight loss, constricted pupils, runny nose, wearing long sleeves during the summer, unexpectedly nodding off, unexplained absences, unaccounted for money loss, no longer hanging around the same people and refusal to bring new friends around. These are all possible warning signs that heroin may be a problem. If a family member or loved one does suspect heroin abuse it is important to consult an expert immediately.

Despite the feeling of helplessness that family members may feel, there are very workable solutions available, starting with intervention and treatment.

Mike Loverde

As a Certified Intervention Professional (CIP), member of NAATP, NAADAC, and accredited by the Pennsylvania Certification Board, Mike Loverde knows first-hand what it’s like to live life with addiction. By overcoming it, he had a calling to work with others who struggle with drug and alcohol addictions—the people who use and the families who feel helpless watching them decay.

With thousands of interventions across the United States done and many more to come, Loverde continues to own the intervention space, since 2005, by working with medical doctors, psychiatrists, psychologists and others who need expert assistance for their patients who need intervention. To further his impact on behavioral health and maximize intervention effectiveness, Loverde is near completion of a Masters in Addiction Studies (MHS) accreditation, as well as a Licensed Independent Substance Abuse Counselor (LISAC), and is committed to attaining the designation of a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC).

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