Heroin is an illegal, highly addictive drug made from morphine; a natural substance extracted from the seed pod of certain varieties of poppy plants. It is typically sold as a white or brownish powder that is cut with sugars, starch, and powdered milk. Pure heroin is a white powder with a bitter taste. It originates in South America and, to a lesser extent, from Southeast Asia, and dominates U.S. markets east of the Mississippi River (National Institute on Drug Abuse, 2018). Typically, it’s smuggled into the United States and sold off for high profit. It’s basically a system that is constantly going around and never-ending. People who are addicted to heroin have an extremely impossible time getting off the drug. Many who are addicted need to higher their doses to get high again which leads to purchasing more heroin which leads to more overdoses. The system is doomed and causes never-ending purchasing and incriminating addicts who truly suffer from a mental illness.
When it comes to treatment options between methadone clinics, rehab facilities, and hospital inpatient programs, there seems to be something they all lack. In most cases, these facilities help people and turn their lives around. These facilities are not accessible to everyone. To those without healthcare who are struggling to survive, it’s near impossible to afford proper and effective rehabilitation options. Many people in lower-income neighborhoods are stuck on drugs since their priorities with money are set to providing for their family and the drugs they’re addicted to (J Psychoactive Drugs, 2009). Poverty makes it much harder for someone who is addicted to a substance to quit. Without access to privatized businesses that call themselves “rehabs” it becomes harder for the average people to feel like their being given adequate treatment for their illness. Sometimes the feeling is true, where privatized rehabs have much more comfortable environments and higher success rates than the options presented to those without equal capital.
In America, there is a huge problem with how mental illness is viewed. Many people are told to overlook it or are that it will go away. People are rarely asked how they are doing mentally. Many individuals seem to not view mental illness as valid, due to the lack of a physical appearance. Things can become debilitating without the proper medication or treatment. This paired with the fact that mental healthcare can be expensive for those without healthcare, causes the mentally ill to not seek help Without receiving the help, they deserve the brain is on haywire. This can turn to drug abuse, becoming abusive, or even becoming a danger to themselves. What most people seem to forget is that addicts are still people, they struggle to survive. When drug abuse and mental health collide, what follows are manic episodes, violence, and more drug abuse (J Psychoactive Drugs, 2009). Without the proper care, addicts are at risk of violence, overdosing, and disease from shared needles. When addicts have access to counselors and therapists there is more of a chance to survive and help. There needs to progress in humanizing addicts to those who dehumanize them. In the United States, it is seen as shameful to be an addict, almost taboo. With people dehumanizing them it causes this big stigma.
Stigmas can be dangerous due to people being less eager to help those in need, thinking they will only be taken advantage of, seeing those in need as almost less than human. Mental health problems and substance use disorders sometimes occur together. Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, and make choices (MentalHealth, 2019). It is easy for people to take their problems out by using drugs to get rid of the emotions of thoughts and feelings of something that unsettles them. Mental illness and drugs like to hold hands together as both cause the other. It is well known that drugs can cause a person to have a mental illness problem that they never had before taking drugs.