Drug abuse and addiction can lead to serious, long-term side effects, ranging from brain trauma to cardiovascular disease. However, substance users and addicts can also fall victim to a variety of viral illnesses including an infamously painful infection called Hepatitis. Risk-taking and poor judgment can lead a person to use infected needles or contaminated tools, perfect breeding grounds for this inflammatory virus. Let’s take a closer look at the grim reality of Hepatitis and what steps can be taken to treat this horrible illness.
The A-B-Cs of Hepatitis
Simply put, hepatitis is a viral infection that causes the liver to become inflamed. Typically, the virus can be contracted from underlying autoimmune conditions, pathogens (bacteria, viruses, and parasites), and drug abuse/addiction. Hepatitis sets in as a result of A, B, C, D, and E viruses. Based on a report by NIDA (National Institute on Drug Abuse), the most common strains are Hepatitis B and C, which are notorious for being spread as a result of abusive or risky behavior. Statistics show that an estimated 850,000 to 2 million U.S. citizens are suffering from Hepatitis B, while a staggering 3.5 million Americans are living with Hepatitis C.
If a victim does not seek treatment for hepatitis, it will inflict severe damage on the liver, resulting in a condition called cirrhosis. Ultimately, people can also suffer from an aggressive strain of liver cancer called hepatocellular carcinoma. Scientists have determined that Hepatitis B and C are responsible for 65% of liver problems in the world.
What is the Connection between Hepatitis and Drugs?
Hepatitis (as well as HIV/AIDS) can be spread through one of two ways: unclean needles and unprotected sex. Here is a closer look:
- Dirty Needles: People who use unsanitary tools (specifically needles) or share equipment can easily spread the hepatitis virus from one victim to the other.
- Risk-Taking: Using drugs and alcohol can result in impaired judgment, making it easier for someone to engage in unprotected sex. Hepatitis can be passed on through intercourse.
Likewise, long-term drug abuse or addiction can aggravate the symptoms of hepatitis.
Always remember that drugs do not have control over your life. You do. Are you suffering from a substance abuse disorder or addiction? Do you have a friend or family member suffering from one or more of these debilitating illnesses? If you do, get in touch with Asana Recovery today. Our counselors and healthcare experts are ready to walk you through every step of the detox and withdrawal process and rehabilitation and guide you towards living a happier, healthier, and freer lifestyle. While the road to recovery might not be an easy road to travel, we promise to help you every step of the way. Take the first step to stay fit, healthy, and safe.
The time for you to take back control of your life is now. If you are interested in one of our residential treatment or supervised detoxification/withdrawal programs, we are ready and waiting to speak with you at your disclosure. Call Asana now at (949) 438-4504 to learn how to overcome your drug addiction or substance abuse troubles today.