Since crack cocaine has first made its debut in the illegal drug scene in the 1980’s it has solidified and remained one of the most addictive substances out there. Crack cocaine is a cooked down and hardened version of another illegal drug called cocaine, which comes in a powder form. Crack cocaine is a much more powerful and addictive version of cocaine because it is cooked into its purest form, taking out the impurities and additives. Smoking crack cocaine delivers an instant and intense high.
Crack cocaine is so addictive because it acts upon the communication pathways within the brain and disrupts the neurotransmitter dopamine. This makes what you feel extremely euphoric and pleasurable. It essentially floods the brain with these feel-good neurotransmitters.
How is Crack Cocaine Abused?
Crack cocaine is most commonly used by smoking it. Its name comes from the sound it makes when heated up and smoked because it makes a crackling sound. It is generally smoked out of a glass or metal pipe. In even more extreme cases, some people will go so far as to inject crack cocaine. There is no safe method to use crack cocaine, but injecting makes it that much more dangerous.
What are the Risks of Crack Cocaine Abuse?
The biggest and most common risk of crack cocaine use is developing a crack cocaine addiction. Crack is so potent that you can become addicted to it after using it just one time. You will be chasing that first high from that point on. The high is extremely powerful but also very elusive because the high only lasts for 5 or 10 minutes. Once it wears off, you will have an intense desire to feel it again.
Crack cocaine use also puts you at risk for a multitude of things to happen. For example, you put yourself at risk of contracting hepatitis B or C or HIV from IV use. Crack cocaine use can also lead to mood disorders like anxiety or psychotic episodes, cardiovascular disease, gastrointestinal disease, respiratory illness, high blood pressure, seizures, stroke, and memory loss.
More About What Are The Risk of Crack Cocaine Use
If you are one of the people who has been sucked into a crack cocaine addiction, you are putting yourself at risk for many long-term health problems. This can include cardiovascular, respiratory, gastrointestinal, or neurovascular problems resulting in heart disease, heart attack, organ failure, or a stroke. This is because crack cocaine puts immense strain on all of your organs, especially your heart.
Crack cocaine use can also lead to cognitive defects and affect your memory, reaction time, and attention span. These things can be permanently impaired. Crack cocaine use can also literally shrink your brain. It leads to shrinkage of gray matter and also premature aging.
How is Crack Cocaine Treated?
Recovery from a crack cocaine addiction will likely begin with a medical detox. This is the body’s withdrawal from crack in a medical setting to ease the withdrawal symptoms and keep you safe. Withdrawal symptoms can include muscle tremors, headaches, depression, increased appetite, exhaustion, insomnia, slowed thinking, and bad dreams.
Once detox is completed, then the real recovery can begin. Detox treats the body, but treatment will help to treat the actual addiction. This will include group and one on one therapy so that you can understand how crack cocaine affected you and what you can do to avoid a relapse.
Start Healing From Crack Cocaine Dependence
We advise that you stay away from crack cocaine altogether. The short high is not worth a lifetime of pain and misery that follows. If you are already addicted to crack, you will need to enter a detox facility and follow up with addiction treatment.