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When heroin was first made (around 1900), it was sold as a cough medicine and a painkiller. It was marketed in bottles like this one
Heroin for medical use in hospitals, as a painkiller. It is in liquid form, so it can be given with a syringe (needle)

Ch acts like morphine in the body. Heroin is called a semi-synthetic opioid, meaning that it was created from an opiate that occurs in nature (morphine). Heroin is a white or brown powder made from the sap of the poppy plant. It is an analgesic drug (a painkiller), and its effects are like other drugs that come from the poppy plant sap, like opium and morphine.


Legality[change | change source]


Effects[change | change source]



AnothePeople can also have very strong psychological symptoms of withdrawal, like depression and strong cravings for heroin. Many heroin users are very afraid of withdrawal. Withdrawal - and fear of withdrawal - is one of the most common reasons why people have trouble quitting heroin. Medications like methadone and Suboxone are sometimes used to treat or prevent withdrawal symptoms, and to decrease cravings for heroin.

Injecting heroin can be very dangerous. A person can get infections by using a needle that has not been cleaned properly. Also, if people share the same needle, they can infect each other with diseases that travel in the blood, like HIV or hepatitis C. People can also get diseases by having unsafe sex while they are high on heroin.

Street names[change | change source]

There are many slang names, or street names, for heroin. These names are different in different places. Some of the most common are Dope, Horse, Junk, H, Brown, and Smack.

Heroin history[change | change source]

Heroin was first made in 1898, by the Bayer Company in Germany. At first, it was used as a cough medicine and a painkiller. People thought that heroin would help decrease morphine and opium addiction. But after twelve years, doctors realized that people became strongly addicted to heroin. In 1914, the United States passed the Harrison Act. This was the first of many attempts to control the use of heroin.

The word heroin comes from the German word heroisch, which means powerful and heroic.