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Is heroin a problem for you?
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What is heroin?

Heroin is a drug that comes from the opium poppy and is in the class of drugs called depressants, because it slows down the brain and the central nervous system. It is one of a group of very strong pain-killing drugs called narcotic analgesics or opioids.

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Street heroin is usually mixed with other things, therefore, it is hard to know how strong the heroin is. This can lead to accidental overdose or death.

Immediate effects can include

  • feel really good
  • make physical pain disappear
  • make you feel sleepy
  • feel nauseous or vomit

Effects depend on...

​What heroin does to you depends on how much you take, how often you have been using heroin (the longer you use, the more you may build up a tolerance to the effects), when you last took heroin, how pure the heroin is, your height and weight, your general health, your past experience with heroin, whether you use heroin on its own or with other drugs.

  • make your breathing become shallow

How heroin affects your body

Tap a body part to learn more of the effects Heroin places on your body.

Long term effects can include

  • loss of appetite
  • have heart and lung problems
  • overdose (the longer you use heroin, the more likely you are to overdose)
  • have your menstrual period irregularly or not at all (women)
  • have long-term constipation
  • find it difficult to get pregnant (women)
  • find it difficult to get an erection (men)

General information

Is heroin a problem for you?

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  • Whether you are having issues with alcohol or other drugs, are concerned about someone else’s alcohol or other drug use, or just have general questions about alcohol or other drugs, you can call ADIS any time of the day or week for support, information, counselling and referral to services in NSW.

    24 hour support line

    1800 250 015

    More about Alcohol Drug Information Service (ADIS) NSW
  • Your Service Hub is an online directory of alcohol and other drugs support, health and welfare services. If you need support for your own or someone else's substance use, you should use terms in Find Services like:

    • drug and alcohol family support

    • drug and alcohol Aboriginal services 

    • drug counselling

    • drug and alcohol rehabilitation

    • drug and alcohol residential treatment

    along with your suburb name to narrow the search to services near you.

    Not sure what service you need? Call the Alcohol and Drug Information Service on 1800 250 015.

    More about Your Service Hub
Your Room > A-Z of Drugs > Heroin