Dangers of Intravenous (IV) Drug Use

Asheville drug treatmentCertain drugs can be used in different ways. Though substance abuse is always dangerous, some ways to use drugs are more harmful than others. Today, we are going to talk about how intravenous drug use can pose significant health risks. Do you need to seek out Asheville drug treatment? Call Legacy Freedom!

Intravenous drug use can cause what is known as track marks. These are scars that form in places where drugs are injected. Many times, people use the same spot to inject drugs. Over time, the skin can become discolored and scarred to the point that it cannot be healed.

Intravenous drug use can cause bruising. This happens when a needle is injected into the vein. Sometimes, blood leaks out of the vein and causes bruising.

Sometimes, users inject drugs into the muscle or underneath skin instead of into the vein. When this is done, it can cause lots of scar tissue and regular scars. It can also cause a higher risk for infection. Believe it or not, it can increase your chances of infection by five times.

Intravenous drug use can also cause puffy hand syndrome. This happens when the back of the hand is used to inject drugs. It can make the entire hand become puffy, aside from the fingers.

A more serious issue that can be caused by sharing needles for intravenous drug use is HIV. It’s important to understand that this is a high risk when sharing needles. Someone who has HIV can spread the virus through intravenous drug use and dirty needles.

Hepatitis C is also a health risk with intravenous drug use. This is an infection that damages the liver. Hepatitis C is one of the most common viruses in the United States. Close to 5 million people are infected with this disease. Because hepatitis C can cause serious health problems, it’s important to understand that close to 90% of those who use drugs intravenously have this virus.

Here, you'll find more dangerous ways IV drugs can affect your health:

  • Abscesses in multiple organs, tissues, and skin
  • Bacterial infections in heart valves and blood vessels
  • Blockage of blood vessels that lead to the heart, brain, liver, lungs and/or kidneys
  • Botulism
  • Brain abscess
  • Cellulitis
  • Collapsed or scarred veins
  • Deteriorated immune system
  • Endocarditis, an infection of the heart chambers
  • Hepatitis B
  • Injectional anthrax
  • Malaria
  • Necrotizing fasciitis, a bacterial skin infection that can cause death
  • Pneumonia
  • Sepsis
  • Soft tissue infections
  • Syphilis
  • Tetanus
  • Toxic shock syndrome

Drug users who like to use intravenously do so because the effects are felt much quicker than if they were snorting or ingesting in other ways. IV drugs take between 15 and 30 seconds to cause effects. Ingesting other ways takes three to five minutes.

Unfortunately, using IV drugs can lead to overdose more so than using in other ways. Overdose symptoms include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Agitation
  • Changes in body temperature
  • Confusion
  • Convulsions
  • Death
  • Depression
  • Diarrhea
  • Difference in pupil size
  • Drowsiness
  • Hallucinations
  • Increased blood pressure
  • Irregular heart rate
  • Nausea
  • Paranoia
  • Pupil reactivity
  • Sweating
  • Tremors
  • Trouble breathing
  • Unconsciousness
  • Unsteadiness
  • Violence or hostility
  • Vomiting

Best Asheville Drug Treatment

If you are using drugs intravenously it's important to seek help immediately. Contact Legacy Freedom now to learn more about the various options you have for help.

If you, or your loved one, are suffering from a substance abuse problem it's time to get professional treatment. Help is always available with support from Legacy Freedom of Asheville. However, all addicts are different. No two are the same. That's why you should contact our facility. We offer tailored rehab treatment for all addicts.

Sometimes, professional Asheville drug treatment or rehab is the only way to rise above addiction and heroin use. Legacy Freedom of Asheville offers tailored treatments that help the direct needs of each of our patients. Support structures are a vital part of all recovery ventures. Several of our therapies occur in a group setting, surrounding you with the support you need to get back on the right path. It’s important to consider getting help, especially during the turn of the season, when you aren’t sure how the weather might affect your recovery.

Contact Legacy Freedom to learn about how our alcohol and drug rehab in Asheville NC is tailored to fit your needs so that you're able to learn how to rejoin life drug-free.

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