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Why is heroin so addictive?


There are many states throughout the country that are seeing a spike in the use of heroin. New Jersey, unfortunately, is not immune to the increase in the use of this highly addictive illegal drug. And, as a result, drug trafficking and drug distribution networks are becoming a larger part of the focus for law enforcement officials - both state and federal - in New Jersey.

But what is it about heroin that makes it so addictive? According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, heroin, as an opioid drug, is very similar to another drug that is frequently used in the medical community: morphine. In fact, any of our readers who have ever been admitted to a hospital for an inpatient medical procedure may have been administered morphine as a painkiller. Heroin, similar to morphine, can cause what is known as a rush - an overwhelming sense of euphoria. It is that rush that brings people who are addicted to heroin back for more.

Fortunately, many local and state judicial branches throughout the country are beginning to see that criminal prosecution of a person who is addicted to an illegal drug, like heroin, may not always be the best answer. Many states have drug courts that are dedicated to ensuring that a person who is charged with a lower level drug possession charge has the opportunity to pursue substance abuse treatment under court supervision, rather than spend time in a jail cell.

A person's level of involvement in the world of illegal drug use and distribution is crucial when it comes time for criminal charges to be filed. People who are merely users - not dealers or distributors - may have a chance to change their lives with the help of court-supervised treatment.

Source: National Institute on Drug Abuse, "DrugFacts: Heroin," Accessed May 18, 2015

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