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Mahmood Kapustin
Mahmood Kapustin

Interesting Facts About Cocaine And [TOP] Crack

Crack cocaine is considered one of the most addictive drugs in the world. While no one can say for certain that a person will become addicted after just one dose of crack, the reality is that many people who have become addicted to crack report that their intense cravings for the drug started very soon after their first use of the potent drug.

interesting facts about cocaine and crack

According to the National Drug Intelligence Center, more than six million Americans have used crack at least once in their lifetime. Crack is a form of crystallized cocaine. Cocaine comes in a powdered form and is made from the leaves of the coca plant, which is native to South America. The drug was originally developed as a pain reliever. The powder is typically cut with talcum powder or sugar and inhaled, rubbed on the gums, or sometimes injected. Cocaine produces a short-term euphoria followed by a plummeting level of energy as users come down from the drug.

Crack cocaine is insidious because it is cheap to produce. The extreme nature of its psychological addiction makes withdrawal very hard; breathing difficulties, anxiety, depression, irritability, and aggression typically occur. There are also long-term physical side effects from crack use that must be carefully monitored during rehab.

Crack is produced by dissolving powdered cocaine in a mixture of water and ammonia or sodium bicarbonate (baking soda). The mixture is boiled until a solid substance forms. The solid is removed from the liquid, dried, and then broken into the chunks (rocks) that are sold as crack cocaine.

Individuals of all ages use crack cocaine--data reported in the National Household Survey on Drug Abuse indicate that an estimated 6,222,000 U.S. residents aged 12 and older used crack at least once in their lifetime. The survey also revealed that hundreds of thousands of teenagers and young adults use crack cocaine--150,000 individuals aged 12 to 17 and 1,003,000 individuals aged 18 to 25 used the drug at least once.

"Crack" is the street name given to cocaine that has been processed from cocaine hydrochloride to a free base for smoking. It is in the form of small, hard, white chunks and is a stimulant to the central nervous system. Crack is deadlier than other forms of cocaine and is extremely addictive. Anyone using crack may become an addict in two to three weeks, and in some cases, people who try crack become instantly addicted the first time they use the drug.

Another popular method of use is to smoke cocaine that has been processed to make a rock crystal (also called "freebase cocaine"). The crystal is heated to produce vapors that are inhaled into the lungs. This form of cocaine is called Crack, which refers to the crackling sound of the rock as it's heated. Some people also smoke Crack by sprinkling it on marijuana or tobacco, and smoke it like a cigarette.

Make no mistake: As interesting as these facts may be, they represent a real and frightening danger. Many individuals who use cocaine begin the habit as teenagers or young adults and the rapid effects of smoked crack make it both more desirable and more dangerous for the user.

Learning about crack cocaine facts can be an alarming experience, particularly if you yourself use cocaine or care deeply about someone else who does. However, this knowledge can be put to good use. The first step to recovery is to admit that there is a problem. Once this hurdle has been overcome, you can get help and counseling from a high-quality, fully accredited rehabilitation facility. At WhiteSands Treatment Center, for example, our staff includes board-certified medical practitioners and our counselors specialize in individualized, dual-diagnosis addiction recovery plans. We offer a variety of programs, ranging from inpatient and outpatient programs to the latest in alternative treatment methods, to accommodate the needs of our clients.

A long history like this can lead to misinformation, but fortunately the public is now fully informed on all of the problems cocaine can cause. However, you may be surprised by these 5 cocaine facts about its past, present and even future.

The form of cocaine known as crack was developed because cocaine had become too popular. Its popularity rose in the 1980s and 1990s when celebrities and socialites could afford it from the drug lords. Because of this increased demand, chemists started making a cheaper product that was even more popular and addictive.

Crack cocaine is a form of cocaine that is made into a rock-like form and gets its name from the crackling sound when it is heated then smoked.1 Crack cocaine is an extremely powerful and addictive stimulant that many people take because it is cheaper than pure powder cocaine and is a fast-acting substance that produces feelings of intense pleasure or euphoria.1, 3

With repeated and chronic use over time, the body may build up a tolerance, resulting in the need for a higher amount of crack cocaine to obtain the same high.2 This repeated use can lead to short- and long-term effects, which can be dangerous and potentially increase the likelihood of an overdose.1, 2

Smoking crack cocaine results in very rapid absorption into the bloodstream, which leads to its effects being felt almost instantly. These instant effects are short-lived, lasting for only 5 to 10 minutes, and then wear off quickly. This can lead people into a cycle of binge use to maintain the high.1, 3

As people continue using crack cocaine, their brains can adapt and become less sensitive to the drug, resulting in a higher tolerance. This tolerance can lead people to use crack more frequently and in larger doses, so they can feel the same euphoric effects.1, 2

As crack cocaine changes the brain over time, people may become less able to identify the negative consequences related to its misuse and as a result, experience poor decision making, which may contribute to the development of addiction.4

People who use crack cocaine and then stop or decrease their use, are at an increased risk for experiencing withdrawal symptoms. Physical dependence is when your body is used to the drug to the point it undergoes withdrawal syndromes when the drug is stopped or reduced. These symptoms can range from mild to severe and last for a few days to even months.1

Unlike the withdrawal syndromes of some other substances like alcohol, benzodiazepines, or opioids, crack cocaine withdrawal is not typically associated with severe, dangerous, or life-threatening withdrawal symptoms. Withdrawal symptoms may include:1, 8

Overdose and overdose deaths are risk factors associated with crack cocaine misuse.1 The total number of cocaine overdose deaths rose from 5,419 in 2014 to 19,447 in 2019, making it even more important to prevent crack cocaine misuse.11

A person who has developed a tolerance (needing more crack to produce effects) to crack cocaine may be at higher risk of an overdose.9 Combining crack cocaine with other substances may also increase the risk of overdose and other adverse health effects.1, 8

Choosing to get treatment for crack cocaine addiction is a brave first step toward a healthier lifestyle. Unlike other substances, there are not any FDA-approved medications to specifically treat stimulant use disorder.1 However medications may be used to help treat some of the general symptoms of withdrawal.

Cocaine and crack certainly differ in appearance. Cocaine is generally found in white powder form, and crack is found in a rock form that is generally white, cream, tan, or light brown. Crack and cocaine also differ in the manner in which they are used. Cocaine is typically snorted, and crack is typically smoked.

Another difference between crack and cocaine relates to the high produced. The intensity and duration of the high largely relate to how the drug is taken, per the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Generally, when cocaine is injected or smoked, the drug takes effect more quickly, resulting in a more intense but shorter high. When cocaine is snorted, it takes longer to feel its effects but the resulting high lasts longer.

According to a clinical pharmacist, cocaine and crack produce very different effects in the body, largely related to how they are usually administered. When cocaine is snorted, its effects occur in about 1-5 minutes; they peak within 20-30 minutes; and they dissipate within 1-2 hours. The effects of crack take hold in under a minute, peak in 3-5 minutes, and last 30-60 minutes. If cocaine is injected, however, the effects begin, peak, and last for about as long as crack. While injection is not the most common method of cocaine consumption, it is used by some people.

The effects of crack can be variable due to the uncertainty of the purity of the cocaine used to manufacture it. This only adds to the seriousness and unpredictability of smoking crack. The effects of crack use are similar to cocaine use although often more intense. They include:

Smoking crack causes these effects to take hold more quickly and intensely than cocaine because crack is absorbed through the membranes of the lungs, entering the bloodstream and the brain within 10-15 seconds. As such, the risk of overdosing is extremely high, leading to convulsions, coma, and death. Symptoms of crack overdose are rapid heart rate and hyperventilation.

A 1/8 ounce of cocaine (3.5 grams), or 8-ball, may cost between $120-150, while a 1/10th gram of crack, or a rock, may cost between $10-25. Cocaine is expensive to buy on the streets. Crack was developed as a cheaper alternative to cocaine, making it more easily affordable to users. As a less expensive alternative, it became more accessible to those in the lower socioeconomic demographic. These people had less disposable income available to spend on drugs, but they were seeking options to get high. This brought crack use to low-income and minority communities. By the 1980s, there was an epidemic of crack use in these communities.

As a result, there is a public perception that cocaine is associated with more affluent drug users, whereas crack use is associated with those in lower income brackets and minorities. Despite this widespread belief, information from the National Institute on Drug Abuse showed that in 1991, the majority of crack users were Caucasian. 350c69d7ab


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