The list of Hollywood heroin users is long but when you can afford your addiction you’re an addict, when you can’t afford it you’re a junkie. By no means could you call Philip Seymour Hoffman a junkie. He lived in an expensive apartment, sent his kids to great schools and reached the top of his game as an actor. However, his death was no different than the junkie overdosing in Oakland, Chicago or Harlem… a needle in the arm and all alone.
One of the reasons that heroin overdoses shock the Hollywood elite is because the addicts live in the shadows. A person such as Angelina Jolie as being a former user but she called heroine her favorite drug. A former addict faces relapse throughout their life because of the nature of the drug and the addiction. Former admitted heroin addicts include Robert Downey Jr., Russell Brand, Courtney Love, Corey Feldman, Robin Williams and Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones.
Heroin addiction has risen over the last decade in part due to prescription drug use. Oxycotin, Vicodine and other drugs in the opiate class are being prescribed more and abused more. In 2013 admissions to hospital ER’s were for heroin users was 13.26% of a figure that jumped one percent in a year. Often people who develop an addiction to pain medication become heroin users out of desperation to solve their very physical and psychological cravings. Hoffman was clean for 23 years, if addiction can happen to someone this smart and talented it can happen to anyone.