Heroin is rapidly becoming a major problem in the country today. The news has featured countless stories of people succumbing to the drug’s adverse effects, to the point that overdose cases have become a “normal sight” for law enforcement.
There is a silver lining to everything, however. Some people have managed to free themselves from the drug’s addictive grip and move on to better lives. One such story comes from right here in St. Louis, courtesy of CBS St. Louis:
(Sonya) Treis, 32, says she began using drugs when she was 12—marijuana at first, but harder drugs quickly followed.
Along the path, she had two sons who are now five and 13. She says missing out on most of their lives led to guilt and shame.
It was DUI and child endangerment charges that led to a court-ordered parenting class at Annie Malone Children’s Home. Police had found her intoxicated, getting ready to drive with her then 7-month-old in the car.
She credits instructor Adrianne with helping her to be a better parent.
“Since I’ve attended her class, my relationship with my 13- and my five-year-old improved tremendously, it really has,” she says. “I can’t even believe it—it almost brings me to tears. My son is opening up with me more, when he had been shut down before.”
Heroin manipulates the brain by feeding it a compound that mimics endorphins, producing an artificial sense of pleasure and relaxation. However, the drug feeds more chemicals than the brain is used to receiving, resulting in a numbing of the brain to endorphins. This results in users having trouble registering pleasure, which leads them to continue “shooting up” to avoid depression.
It is possible to recover from the damage that the brain sustains over repetitive heroin use. The obvious solution would be to stop using the drug immediately to allow time for the brain to heal. This may be incredibly difficult for those who have developed a dependency on the drug. These people may need to check into a facility for drug rehab in St. Louis.
It takes a lot of willpower and courage to overcome heroin addiction the way Sonya Treis did. However, if you were to take one thing from her story, it should be that even the worst addictions can be conquered. If you or a loved one is struggling with substance abuse, you can always seek help from a trusted St. Louis, MO rehab center like the Midwest Institute for Addiction.
(Source: Former Heroin Addict Finds Parenting Help through Annie Malone Center; CBS St. Louis; April 4, 2014)