Celebrity Overdose Opens Door for Education on Addiction

Philip Seymour Hoffman

It is not uncommon for a celebrity death from a drug overdose to quickly thrust the dangers of drugs back into the news. With the recent death of actor, Philip Seymour Hoffman, of a reported heroin overdose, we wanted to address the dangers of this drug and the importance for remembering that addiction does not discriminate.

Heroin, a highly addictive “downer” drug, is derived from morphine and affects the brain’s pleasure systems and interferes with the brain’s ability to perceive pain. Several effects of the drug can be:

  • Clouded mental functions due to depression
  • Slurred speech, pulmonary complications and even liver disease
  • Street heroin can even lead to clogging of the blood vessels do to the many additives that don’t dissolve

So, why is this substance so deadly? Because it is mixed with other compounds multiple times, and consumers are unaware of how “pure” the drug is. Sometimes fatal, the effect on the respiratory system creates an accumulation of carbon dioxide in the blood and can ultimately lead to death.

Heroin Image

Every day, there are hundreds of opiate deaths that could have been prevented. In the wake of many highly publicized celebrity overdoses, it is very apparent that we can never stop educating our society on the dangers of this disease. Whether you are a star in a movie or a local teacher, addiction is real and does not discriminate. Hoffman’s death is a reminder that recovery is a process that you have to work towards everyday to maintain.

Are you or a loved one suffering from a drug or alcohol addiction? Our staff of recovery professionals is here to help you find and maintain a life of permanent sobriety.