Nirvana Recovery

How To Quit Heroin – Best Steps to Successfully Quit Heroin

How To Quit Heroin - Best Steps to Successfully Quit Heroin

8 Steps to Successfully Quit Heroin in Phoenix

Among all drugs, heroin is notably the most commonly used in the US, also presenting a high relapse rate. However, through psychological behavior therapies, comprehensive residential programs, and medication, successful recovery from heroin addiction is achievable. If you or someone you love is looking to quit heroin, remember, you’re not alone. Support and help are available to guide you through recovery. When addiction is your truth, let’s change the story. Nirvana Recovery designed the “8-Step Heroin Recovery Journey” to help people quit heroin in Phoenix for good. It’s a clear plan with eight steps that show you how to stop using heroin successfully.
Heroin is a highly potent opiate drug that depresses the central nervous system and causes a euphoric rush. Over time, users require larger doses to achieve the euphoria they desire, leading to heroin addiction or dependence. The issue of heroin addiction in Phoenix is not a small one; the state of Arizona as a whole has experienced an uptick in heroin use over the years, and Phoenix, as the largest city in the state, plays a significant role in the prevalence of heroin use statewide.

Step 1: Recognizing the Need for Change

Quitting heroin addiction is an incredibly difficult battle. Maybe you’ve tried quitting before, but past attempts to quit might have felt overwhelming. Remember, this doesn’t mean it’s impossible. Many resources and support systems can help you on your journey to recovery.
Like many major metropolitan areas worldwide, Phoenix serves as a hub for a diverse range of people and lifestyles. Additionally, heroin use can be impacted by the ease of access to various illicit substances in major cities. Drug use in the Phoenix metro area reflects that of the rest of Arizona, and a need for intervention is apparent.
Accepting that you need help battling heroin addiction is a significant part of the journey toward recovery. It takes courage to seek help. By acknowledging that your addiction is a problem, you can set aside the drugs that are at the forefront of your life.

Here are 10 questions to help you recognize if you might have an addiction problem:

  1. Do you use more of the substance than you initially intend to?
  2. Have you tried to cut down or stop using the substance but couldn’t?
  3. Do you spend a lot of time obtaining, using, or recovering from the substance?
  4. Do you experience cravings or a strong desire to use the substance?
  5. Has substance use interfered with your responsibilities at work, school, or home?
  6. Have you continued to use the substance despite it causing problems in your relationships?
  7. Have you given up or reduced social, occupational, or recreational activities due to substance use?
  8. Do you use substances in situations where it’s physically hazardous?
  9. Have you continued to use the substance despite knowing it’s causing physical or psychological harm?
  10. Do you need to use more of the substance to achieve the same effect (tolerance), or have you noticed that the same amount of substance has less effect than before?
Reflecting on these questions can provide insight into your substance use patterns and whether they may be indicative of an addiction.
Another piece of the recovery puzzle is learning about your addiction. Understanding the nature of heroin addiction, the effects of heroin addiction on your brain, and the recovery process can serve you when progressing toward recovery. Knowledge is power and can help you make informed decisions and stay committed to healing.

Step 2: Seeking Professional Help

So you have decided to pursue treatment, but now what? Choosing an appropriate heroin addiction treatment center or facility that suits your needs is intimidating. Who can help, and who can you trust? Where can you feel safe as you work to get better?
The Phoenix metro area has an overwhelming number of treatment options; while many places are available, deciding what type of care you need can feel overwhelming. A simple online search for “heroin addiction recovery” can render a long list of confusing possibilities.

Here are 10 main questions to ask yourself to find the right professional support:

  • Does the program offer individualized treatment plans?
  • Are there medically supervised detox options available?
  • What types of therapy are offered (e.g., cognitive-behavioral therapy, group therapy)?
  • Is there support for dealing with withdrawal symptoms and cravings?
  • Does the program address underlying issues like mental health disorders?
  • Is long-term aftercare support provided to prevent relapse?
  • What is the program’s success rate or outcomes for people with heroin addiction?
  • Are the staff qualified and experienced in addiction treatment?
  • Is the program covered by insurance or are there other financial support options?
  • Can family members or loved ones be involved in the treatment process?
These questions can guide you toward finding a program that aligns with your needs and increases your chances of successful recovery.
You can rest assured that Nirvana Recovery is an option in Phoenix. Nirvana Recovery’s facilities are safe and have serene settings with multiple levels of care for your specific needs.

What to Expect At Nirvana Recovery When Starting Treatment

At the first visit, known as the initial assessment and consultation, a professional at Nirvana Recovery will provide a comprehensive assessment designed to get a complete picture of your specific needs or the needs of your loved one. This assessment will help determine the severity of the addiction and any co-occurring mental health issues.
When an individual decides to commit to treatment at Nirvana Recovery, they start the intake process to determine what level of care is appropriate. Program participants can learn about treatment expectations and therapy modalities during this crucial step and become familiar with staff.

Step 3: Undergoing Detoxification

If you or a loved one is physically dependent on a substance like heroin, a medically supervised detoxification is a necessary step before a person can move toward making additional therapeutic progress. Medically supervised detox is essential for safely managing withdrawal symptoms and will prepare the individual for the therapeutic aspects of the program they choose. Heroin withdrawal, unfortunately, involves some problematic and unpleasant symptoms.
During heroin detox, an individual will be able to safely stop using heroin and other drugs or alcohol if applicable. Medication-assisted treatment, or MAT, is commonly utilized and includes the administration of specialized medications that can help manage withdrawal symptoms and cravings. These medications help make withdrawal more manageable and include the following FDA-approved options:
  • Methadone
  • Buprenorphine
  • Naltrexone
In addition to therapeutic programs, Nirvana Recovery employs the use of detox programs to jumpstart your progress. Many addiction recovery centers outsource detox programming; having detox available in-house is valuable to maintain continuity in your recovery progress.

Step 4: Participating in Rehabilitation Programs

After reaching a state of stability once withdrawal symptoms become manageable, the next stage of treatment can begin. This stage involves therapeutic and psychological rehabilitation programs that help individuals understand the root of their heroin addiction and develop skills to avoid a relapse in the future. Health care professionals, including doctors, therapists, and addiction specialists, play a crucial role in moving patients to this phase.
When picking a program, there are many choices and levels of care, which can feel overwhelming. You might be caught in the questions like- Do I need an inpatient or residential facility where you can have 24/7 services? Or is an outpatient program sufficient?
To help yourself choose the best rehabilitation program for managing heroin withdrawal symptoms, consider asking these questions with your therapists:
  1. Does the program offer medically supervised detoxification?
  2. What kind of medical support is available for withdrawal symptoms?
  3. Is there access to medications that can ease withdrawal symptoms, such as methadone or buprenorphine?
  4. How does the program address the psychological aspects of addiction?
  5. Is there a comprehensive aftercare plan to prevent relapse?
  6. What is the staff’s experience with opioid addiction?
  7. Can the program customize treatment based on individual needs?
  8. How does the program support mental health during withdrawal?
  9. Are there holistic treatment options available?
  10. What is the average duration of the program, and is it flexible based on individual progress?
These questions will help you identify a program that not only helps manage withdrawal symptoms but also supports long-term recovery. Phoenix is home to many treatment options for heroin addiction and detox. Each recovery center has a different way of approaching heroin withdrawal treatment. Two primary types of treatment approaches include inpatient and outpatient services.

Inpatient Treatment

Inpatient treatment, also called residential treatment, is an option for many individuals seeking help with heroin addiction. Because heroin is so addictive and potent, most recoveries begin with an intensive detoxification program. Supervision of clients in an inpatient setting is 24/7 to allow clients to thrive separately from relapse triggers and other negative influences in their day-to-day lives.
The inpatient treatment environment is structured, providing opportunities to attend individual and group therapy as well as help clients heal through holistic therapies.

Outpatient Treatment

After stepping down from inpatient rehabilitation programs, the next step is an outpatient treatment program. Outpatient treatment is also appropriate for individuals who need addiction treatment but can manage to stay in their home environment. Often, clients can continue to hold employment and live in their homes while recovering.

Step 5: Engaging in Therapy and Counseling

A one-size-fits-all approach just doesn’t work when it comes to quitting heroin. Your path toward becoming addicted to heroin occurred differently from another person. Why wouldn’t your treatment needs also be unique to you?
At Nirvana Recovery, multiple treatment styles are available to you. Clients at Nirvana Recovery have the opportunity to engage in therapeutic activities designed to address the root causes of addiction and develop coping strategies.
Therapeutic modalities that are available at Nirvana Recovery include the following:
  • Individual therapy: meeting one-on-one with a therapist who specializes in heroin addiction recovery
  • Group therapy: similar to the support from an individual therapist, but adding a group component to build peer support and solidarity
  • Family therapy: including family members in the treatment process to help develop support systems and to address relationship issues that occurred due to addiction
  • Trauma-informed Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT): a form of therapy that links the impact of trauma from childhood or other exposures to addiction and mental health
  • Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT): a form of therapy that helps manage emotions and reduce self-destructive behaviors that led to substance abuse initially
  • Holistic therapies: participants can engage in healing through art and music therapy and movement practices like yoga and meditation

Step 6: Building a Support System

Seeking professional support when trying to quit heroin is a significant piece of the recovery puzzle. But once treatment ends, what’s next? Addiction is a long-term process that needs some level of ongoing support even after a person successfully graduates from a rehab center.

Peer Support

In Phoenix, people can find peer support groups near their neighborhood. These groups include support groups such as Narcotics Anonymous (NA) or other similar programs. Connecting with others who have faced similar challenges can provide valuable insights and encouragement to support continued recovery and maintain sobriety.
Some resources for building a peer support system around heroin addiction in Phoenix include:
Heroin Anonymous: area residents can search online for a support group in their area
SAMHSA: the SAMSHA website serves as a platform to provide free resources, including various support group networks

Family Support

In addition to community support, quitting heroin may involve seeking support from your family. Family plays a significant role in recovery. When you decide to quit heroin, consider informing your family or close friends about your decision. Having a solid support system can significantly improve your chances of success.
At Nirvana Recovery, family therapy and family education programs are available, recognizing the critical role that family dynamics can play in addiction and recovery.

Step 7: Developing Coping Strategies

Developing coping strategies that serve you during and after treatment is a long-term process. Transferring the coping skills learned in therapy to the real world takes practice and patience, but it’s possible to apply these skills to all settings you find yourself in.
Many addiction treatment programs include educational sessions to help clients understand addiction and mental health, develop life skills, and prepare for life after treatment. Education specific to this area is essential for pursuing a life that feels worth living.
At Nirvana Recovery, clients learn and practice healthy coping strategies to manage stress and triggers that may lead to relapse. This may include mindfulness, meditation, yoga, or other activities that promote well-being. Clients learn techniques specific to relapse prevention, which can consist of ending contact with people who are triggers or who continue to engage in illicit drug use.
With the heroin issue in Phoenix, residents need to have treatment options they can trust. Nirvana Recovery is aware of the concerns specific to Phoenix’s growing drug use and can help program participants with resources and coping skills specific to potential relapse triggers in the area.

Step 8: Committing to Long-Term Recovery

After reaching a place of stability with treatment, individuals battling heroin addiction shift to aftercare planning. Aftercare is an outpatient approach that provides the ongoing support required for recovery. Aftercare services help treatment graduates maintain sobriety and manage mental health symptoms after leaving their program and include the following:
  • Outpatient services and education
  • Community support groups
  • Individual therapy
  • Group therapy
At Nirvana Recovery, aftercare programs provide ongoing support following the completion of a treatment program to help maintain long-term recovery. Program participants meet with therapeutic providers to develop a relapse prevention plan and identify potential triggers as they encounter cravings and challenges in the real world.
Maintaining recovery is an uphill battle, and Nirvana Recovery is here to support you or a loved one with wraparound services designed to encourage you every step of the way.


Heroin addiction affects individuals from all walks of life, but they all have one thing in common: they can recover. Recovery includes managing withdrawal, psychological treatment, long-term relapse prevention, and lifestyle maintenance.
Following these steps, from detox to aftercare support, can help you or a loved one successfully quit heroin. It can feel intimidating, but it is well worth it as you reclaim your life.
At Nirvana Recovery, we show up for you in your dark moments of addiction to work toward sobriety and healing. We are committed to seeing you through your path to recovery and would be honored to partner with you.
Remember, the path to recovery is unique for each individual. Seeking professional guidance and support is crucial in overcoming heroin addiction. If you or someone you know is struggling with heroin addiction, contact Nirvana Recovery today.

FAQs on Quitting Heroin in Phoenix

Nirvana Recovery specializes in dual diagnosis treatment, meaning that heroin addiction is treated alongside mental health conditions. Additionally, Nirvana Recovery is a facility with multiple services contained in one location: detox and inpatient treatment, outpatient treatment, and aftercare services.
A person who is addicted to heroin will likely exhibit signs of avoidance due to a need to pursue taking the substance. They seem to have an altered state of mind and exhibit clouded thinking. It might also seem like they are delusional.
The first step is identifying a need for help and locating a suitable treatment option. Next, engaging in a medically supervised detox is essential. At Nirvana Recovery, program participants can complete their detox and pursue therapy services through one facility.
There are a plethora of programs and hospital settings for heroin detox in the Phoenix area, but finding a quality program is critical. Nirvana Recovery offers a detox program as part of its inpatient treatment, followed by multiple outpatient programs.
The heroin rehabilitation process follows a similar timeline for each person pursuing recovery; however, each individual is unique. Each stage of the process, from detox to aftercare, varies in length depending on the duration and severity of the person’s heroin usage. Expect treatment to take at least a month or more.
A combination of targeted medication and behavioral therapy methods is effective for curbing heroin addiction. Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is successfully utilized in many treatment programs.
Family support is significant in heroin recovery, and the family is encouraged to engage in therapy and educational services. Family engagement plays an essential role in treatment and helps increase the likelihood that someone in recovery will be successful long-term.
Because each person struggling with heroin addiction arrives at rehabilitation with a specific set of challenges, Nirvana Recovery utilizes customized approaches unique to each program participant. Focusing on the person rather than the addiction ensures each person receives the best treatment possible.
After treatment ends, continued support is essential for successful ongoing recovery from heroin addiction. Treatment centers, like Nirvana Recovery, will provide their clients with resources for support groups and educational services to facilitate long-term sober living.
While many people do seek help for their heroin addiction, many people do not seek treatment due to the stigma and shame around addiction. Additionally, issues with access to resources for recovery are limited due to recent funding shortages in Maricopa County and the state of Arizona.
From the moment an individual arrives for their intake session, providers at Nirvana Recovery partner with them to create a customized treatment plan. Nirvana Recovery believes recovery is most successful when treatment plans are tailored to each person.
Although the exact heroin addiction recovery rate is difficult to calculate, recovery outcomes are significantly higher when you engage in treatment.
Outpatient heroin addiction services are plentiful in the Phoenix metro area. Finding the best one for your needs is tricky. If you or a loved one need assistance battling heroin addiction, reach out to Nirvana Recovery today.
It is possible to maintain a drug-free lifestyle after heroin addiction treatment. Most treatment will transition into aftercare planning, which involves continuing outpatient services designed to prevent potential relapse. Phoenix residents can join a peer support group, such as Narcotics Anonymous (NA), to continue to receive peer support.
Many people avoid seeking heroin treatment because of the associated cost. However, most major insurance plans will cover some or all of substance abuse treatment. Additionally, Phoenix has non-profit organizations that assist people who qualify based on not having insurance or being unable to afford treatment independently.
Additionally, people seeking recovery options can apply for various grants for drug rehabilitation specific to Arizona, which can help mitigate the cost of treatment.
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Nirvana Recovery