Risk of death from overdosing on heroin or other opioids such as Vicodin or OxyContin goes up substantially after periods of refraining from drug use. Quantities that once brought pleasure can be fatal after a period of abstinence. The research shows that individuals leaving jail or prison are particularly vulnerable.
Something that has come out of the increased awareness of heroin addiction is a newfound interest with the controversial drug naloxone that can reverse the side effects and overdoses of opioids. It is a right move that more states are giving police and first responders' access to this drug, but it is one that comes with a lot of controversy.