Heroin is a dangerous and powerful illicit opioid, and it is a Schedule I drug listed by the DEA; this means it has no medicinal use and has a high potential for abuse. It comes in powder form and can range from white to brown and even a black tar color. Heroin is usually smoked, snorted, or injected. Heroin is known for its pain-relieving properties, and the intense euphoric rush it gives the user immediately after it’s ingested.
How Long Does Heroin Stay in Your System?
The intense effects of the drug typically last seconds to a few minutes, and the drug’s effects peak in one to two hours. Most effects wear off within 3 to 5 hours, but it takes far longer than that for the metabolites (byproducts of the drug once it is broken down) to leave your system. Heroin has a quick half-life of two to six minutes, but it is broken down into morphine and 6-acetyl morphine. The half-life of 6-acetyl morphine is 25 minutes, and the half-life of morphine is one and a half to seven hours. Half-life means the amount of time it takes for half of the drug to be eliminated from your system. It takes approximately four to five half-lives for heroin to be eliminated from the system. The National Library of Medicine states about heroin:
Heroin is one of the most seriously abused drugs and its consumption is illegal. Therefore, the detection of the drug in addicts has to be highly accurate and reliable. Morphine detection in urine is the most common method to confirm consumption. (NIH)
What Are The Ways to Test for Heroin?
There are various ways to test for drugs in your system. Urine drug screens (UD’s) are the most common because they produce rapid results and are cheaper, but occasionally other tests may be used. Here are the detection times of heroin for the most commonly used tests, and most of these tests are looking for the metabolites of the drug, which in the case of heroin, is morphine.
- Urine – 1 to 4 days after last use. However, most of the time heroin is no longer detectable in the urine after 2 days.
- Blood and Saliva – Could be detected for up to 2 days, however, blood and saliva tests aren’t often used to detect heroin because it has such a short half-life. 5 to 6 hours after last use most likely heroin cannot be detected in the blood or saliva.
- Hair – Hair follicle testing is the only test that can detect heroin use for longer than a week. Heroin can be detected in the hair for up to 3 months or longer.
It is important to note that heroin can be detected in the system for longer with chronic or heavy users. Heavy and excessive use causes the drug to be stored in the fatty tissues of the body, and that takes much longer to be eliminated from one’s system. Heroin is one of the most well-known illicit drugs in this world and is affecting so many people across the country. It’s one of the most highly addictive substances known to man and lives are being lost daily, but there is treatment available.
Factors That Affect Heroin Leaving Your System
The length of time it takes for heroin to get out of your system is just like any other drug and depends on several factors. Each individual is different based on their:
- Weight and height
- Body fat
- Liver and kidney health
- The quality and amount of drug taken
Personalized Treatment for Heroin Addiction
If you or someone you love is struggling with a heroin addiction, our addiction specialists are available around the clock to assist you. Evoke Wellness assists men, women, and families throughout the United States that are struggling with substance abuse and are searching for addiction treatment. We can help you get on the road to long-lasting recovery. You don’t have to suffer any longer. To learn about how to overcome your heroin addiction and how heroin can affect your life in a negative way, give us a call we are available 24/7 and all the calls are free and confidential. One of our specialists will help you with finding the right heroin detox and treatment to help aid you in your recovery.