Heroin Drug Use And Its Effects On The United States

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Heroin is an addictive, illegal opioid painkiller derived from morphine. This analgesic drug produces stress-relieving effects along with a sense of euphoria. Addiction to heroin generally begins as an addiction to another substance: marijuana, alcohol, cocaine, or prescription painkillers. Overdose on heroin can cause many complications including coma and death. This risk is commonly increased by combining heroin with alcohol or by cutting it in with other drugs. Injection of heroin also puts one at a significantly increased risk of contracting HIV, Hepatisis, other disease carried in the bloodstream (CDC, 2015). According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (2015), 8,200 people died from heroin-related overdose deaths in the United States in 2013. This number has been climbing steadily over the past decade and continues to climb today within certain demographics and age groups.
Heroin drug use is being addressed within the broader topic of substance abuse in the United States under Healthy People 2020, a 10-year plan to improve the nation’s overall health. Understanding how heroin drug use is addressed in Healthy People 2020 is especially important to public health and community health professionals. According to, 22 million Americans struggles with some form of substance abuse, including heroin. Healthy People 2020 outlines objectives for reducing overall substance abuse in the nation in upcoming years through policy, prevention,

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