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Heroin Dosage
by Erowid

Although insufflation (snorting/sniffing) is perhaps the most common way heroin is now used in the Americas and Europe, we have little information about the pure dosages which are used. Often heroin users will be taught about how much to insufflate from the person they first try it with and then simply titrate their own dose as they wish by increasing or decreasing the size of the line used. Our guesstimate is that doses for insufflation are probably between 10 and 50 mg for less tolerant people and 20 to 80 mg for those who use frequently.

Insufflated (Snorted) Heroin Dosages (tentative)
 w/ no tolerancew/ heavy tolerance
Common5 - 40 mg20 - 60 mg
Strong20 - 60 mg50 - 150 mg
Redosing5 - 10 mg10 - 20mg

Onset : 30-120 seconds to first alert, 10 to 30 minutes to peak
Redosing Time : 30 to 180 minutes after last dose
Duration : 3 - 5 hours

Heroin users describe chopping out "pin"-thin lines of heroin and then redosing every 30-60 minutes: getting high, coming down a little, snorting another line to get high, coming down a little. This is done over the course of an evening or a day and may feel like chasing the peak high that is achieved. Heroin use is often accompanied by other drug use such as alcohol, tobacco, or cannabis use. Combining heroin or other opioids with stimulants is sometimes called "speed balling" and many users report very powerful euphoric effects but also can be very dangerous at high doses or when done frequently. Using stimulants and depressants together is dangerous both in terms of acute physical risks and can lead to or be part of very serious addictions.

For some information about dosage at tolerance levels, see Heroin Tolerance Dosage Levels.

Intravenous Heroin Dosages
 w/ no tolerancew/ heavy tolerance
Common5 - 10 mg20 - 40 mg
Strong8 - 15 mg40 - 60 mg

Onset : 10 - 20 seconds
Duration : 4 - 5 hours

The charts above shows intravenous (IV) dosages in milligrams (mg) for individuals with different levels of tolerance. Because people quickly develop tolerance to the effects of heroin, and because batches of heroin vary from extremely low (2-3%) to extremely high (98%) purity, dosages will vary dramatically depending on whether an individual has been using regularly, and for how long. The numbers on this page are approximations only and should not be used to determine actual dosages.

For some information about dosage at tolerance levels, see Heroin Tolerance Dosage Levels.

Smoked/Vaporized Heroin Dosages
Common15 - 25 mg
Strong20 - 30 mg

Onset : 5 - 10 seconds
Peak Onset : 10 minutes
Peak Duration : 5 - 6 minutes
Duration : 3 - 5 hours

Oral Heroin Dosages
Common50 - 70 mg

Although oral use of heroin is uncommon among party and weekend users, it is sometimes used this way as a pain medication, by field workers, and by addicts trying to ween themselves off.

Every individual reacts differently to every chemical.
Know your Body - Know your Mind - Know your Substance - Know your Source.

Erowid's dosage information is a summary of data gathered from users, research, and other
resources and should not be construed as recommendations. Individuals can respond
differently to the same dosage. What is safe for one can be deadly for another.

Start low with new substances.
Have trusted companion/guide/sitter/friend present and/or available.