Heroin is a Schedule I controlled substance. The illegal opioid is usually snorted, smoked or injected, but it can be swallowed in pill form. How long does heroin stay in your system? That depends on a few factors, including individual characteristics and the administration method.
How Long Does Heroin Stay in Your System: The High
Heroin affects the reward centers of the brain, telling you that you should take another dose even if your reasoning tells you that it’s not safe or healthy. Because heroin is so powerful and addictive, it can make users want more as their first dose wears off.
The initial heroin high delivers a rush of euphoria. This is pleasant for most people because the drug reduces anxiety, depression, and pain. Even if people have negative experiences, however, the brain’s pleasure centers send signals that make them want to use the drug again.
The enjoyable high lasts for only a few minutes. Once the euphoria dissipates, people who take heroin might feel sluggish and drowsy for several hours.
How Long Does Heroin Stay in Your System for Drug Testing?
Heroin has a half-life of 30 minutes. In other words, half of the substance leaves your system within half an hour of taking it. Different types of opioids have distinct half-lives. Some prescription painkillers stay in your system longer than heroin.
But the length of time for which heroin stays in the system differs. It depends on the person’s body composition, age, history with the drug, metabolism, and hydration. The type and quality of heroin also play a role.
Heroin is usually undetectable in an individual’s urine two days after their last dose. Depending on how much you took and how long you used it before you stopped, you might have a positive drug test for up to a week.
The drug is undetectable in your blood and saliva fairly quickly. A blood test might be negative for heroin just five hours after the substance was consumed. A hair follicle test can detect heroin for approximately three months, but it’s not always accurate.
How Long Does Heroin Stay in Your System During Detox?
If you have decided to stop using heroin, you’re courageous. It’s not always easy to quit because you usually feel worse before you start feeling better.
When you stop dosing yourself with the drug, you may begin to experience withdrawal symptoms within several hours. Those symptoms can last for weeks even though the drug leaves your system within a few days.
That’s because the drug changes the way that your brain works. Your system needs time to regain balance. Until it does, you may feel as though you’re under the influence of a drug that makes you feel terrible. Physical and psychological healing from heroin abuse can take months.
At Grace Recovery Community, we offer a no-nonsense heroin detox program that lets you focus on your wellness for as long as it takes to reach recovery. Even after the drug is out of your system, you can take part in holistic therapies, such as:
- Support groups
- Anger management
- Grief and loss therapy
Don’t let fear keep you stuck in a cycle of drug abuse. Learn how you can access healing, fulfillment and sustained recovery by calling 877.554.7223.