Crack Cocaine Addiction & Treatment

Crack Cocaine Addiction

A Guide To Crack Cocaine, Cocaine Addiction and Treatment

Crack Cocaine Pipe

Step by Step Recovery specialise in bespoke treatment programmes for all manner of substance addictions, alcohol and behavioural addictions.

Our professionally run CQC-registered treatment centre in London, Essex, offers private drug rehab treatment for those suffering with an addiction to crack cocaine.

If you or a loved one have a problem with crack cocaine and want help, want to educate yourself around the dangers of the drug or spot crack cocaine use in a family member, you have come to the right place.

What Is Crack Cocaine?

Crack cocaine is a powerful Class A stimulant drug that is derived from the Coca plant. The same plant that powdered cocaine is extracted from.

Crack cocaine is a free base form of cocaine but it differs in that it is more concentrated and delivers a more intense high. The effects of crack cocaine last for a shorter period of time than other forms of cocaine. On average, crack cocaine’s effects last for only 5 to 10 minutes before there is a comedown.

Appearance and Cost of Crack Cocaine

Crack cocaine comes in a whitish/yellowish rock. The rock is usually placed in a pipe or similar and heated so the vapors can be inhaled. The cost of a crack rock varies but is generally between £10-20, depending on where it is purchased from in the UK.

Crack can also be heated and melted into a liquid which can then be injected into a vein.

Common UK street names for crack cocaine include: Sugar rock, Crack, Base, Pebbles, Wash, Stones, White and Toot.

The Effects Of Crack Cocaine

Crack cocaine packs a big punch; this is one very powerful drug and with that power comes huge health risks.

The desired effects of crack cocaine include:

  • An intense rush of euphoria
  • Excitement
  • Strong sexual desire
  • A feeling of power and invincibility – leading to increased risk taking behaviours
  • Confidence
  • Chattiness
  • Alertness

The negative effects of crack cocaine include:

  • Rapid heart beat
  • Pounding heart – as if your heart is going to come out of your chest
  • Loss of bowel control
  • Panic and nervousness
  • Agitation
  • Restlessness
  • Aggression and violence
  • Paranoia
  • Nausea
  • Increased sweating
  • Dizziness
  • Intense craving for more crack cocaine
  • Obsessive picking and self-harm tendencies

Coming down from crack cocaine often causes users to feel “wired”, anxious and restless. This, coupled with an intense craving for more of the drug leads many users to binge.

Following a binge on crack cocaine, most users are unable to cope naturally with the crack withdrawal symptoms. Crack cocaine users will often counteract the withdrawal symptoms by taking valium, cannabis[4] , alcohol [5] or heroin[6] . This regularly leads to a two fold or more addiction where polydrug use becomes a real problem.

Short Term And Long Term Effects of Crack Cocaine Use

Crack is so addictive that very few are able to use the drug recreationally, more often than not an addiction develops very quickly.

Short term use of crack cocaine can cause instantaneous death. Common causes include cardiac arrest, heart attack and dangerous risk taking behaviour.

The long term effects of crack cocaine use – smoking:

  • Permanent damage to the lungs
  • Coughing and respiratory problems
  • Permanent damage to the heart, kidneys and liver
  • Malnutrition
  • Crack induced psychosis
  • Paranoia
  • Severe depression and anxiety
  • Suicidal ideation and attempts at own life
  • Permanent cognitive impairment
  • Tooth decay and gum disease
  • Risk of contracting Hep C, HIV and other blood borne viruses from shared crack paraphernalia

The long term effects of crack cocaine use – injecting:

  • Abscesses and infections at injection sites
  • Sepsis
  • Cellulitis

Injecting crack cocaine carries all of the SAME risks as smoking but the risks of contracting a life threatening condition or blood borne virus is much greater in someone who administers crack intravenously.

Shocking images of a crack cocaine addict. Crack causes an intense urge to pick and self harm

Crack Cocaine Is Dangerously Addictive

Crack cocaine has a reputation for being one of the most addictive drugs available. Many start off using the drug recreationally and find that they are unable to stop craving more of it and so end up developing a crack cocaine habit.

At £10-20 per rock and each rock only lasting a short while, as you can imagine, crack cocaine addiction is extremely expensive. It is an addiction that very few can afford for very long.

Many crack cocaine addicts end up committing crime, stealing money from family and friends and selling valuables in order to fund a craving that cannot be satisfied.

Crack Cocaine and Heroin Addiction

Many, but not all crack cocaine addicts end up with a heroin addiction also. Heroin is the polar opposite in terms of the effects it produces. Many will buy the two drugs together. Following a binge on crack cocaine, heroin provides the ideal antidote to the extremely unpleasant feelings of withdrawal that crack produces.

Crack cocaine deaths and purity

Crack cocaine deaths 2007 to 2016 are directly correlated and increase with the purity. ONS.

The purity and availability of cocaine and crack cocaine has resulted in a large surge of cocaine related deaths in recent years in the UK. Deaths attributed to cocaine cannot be deduced to the specific type or form of cocaine; toxicology reports can only determine if a derivative of cocaine is present at the time of death.

Despite there being no way of determining the type of cocaine that is responsible for the increase in the cocaine related deaths, 2017 saw a 30% increase in the number of young people under the age of 25 accessing treatment for problems with crack cocaine.[8]  This strongly suggests that crack cocaine use is on the increase in the UK, especially amongst the younger generation.

Signs A Family Member Is Using Crack Cocaine

Crack cocaine is a very dangerous and very addictive drug. If you suspect that a loved one or family member is using crack cocaine it is important not to ignore the problem and urge them to get professional addiction help promptly.

Signs of crack cocaine use:

  • Marked change in appearance, scabs and infections from picking, weight loss, tooth decay and loss of interest in self care and hygiene
  • Erratic behaviour and mood swings
  • Money and valuables going missing
  • Change in social circle
  • Enlarged pupils and visible effects[9]  of crack cocaine use
  • Discovering crack cocaine paraphernalia [10] including rocks, crack pipe, needles, homemade crack pipes

Crack Cocaine Withdrawal and Detox

Due to crack cocaine being so tremendously addictive, very few will be able to break the habit without professional help and intervention.

Withdrawal symptoms include extreme anxiety, agitation and an immense craving for more crack. Step by Step Recovery provide a bespoke medical crack cocaine detox for those that cannot stop using crack cocaine. This is carried out in-house in our fully residential rehab under the constant monitoring of our highly skilled and trained staff.

Treatment For Crack Cocaine Addiction

If you have an addiction to crack cocaine, it is important to understand that addiction is a disease of the brain that responds to evidence based addiction treatments. The process of change takes time; this is why a minimum of 4-6 weeks crack cocaine rehab treatment is recommended.

The optimum drug addiction treatment time is 8 to 12 weeks. This is how long it takes the brain to heal, adapt and incorporate new healthy behaviours habitually.

Step by Step Recovery offer private residential rehab for crack cocaine addiction. With our professional and bespoke help for crack cocaine addiction, you or your loved one can become free of this deadly addiction. Furthermore, we offer a holistic approach to addiction treatment that will provide you with the tools of recovery to stay clean and rebuild your life and relationships.

Call us direct or complete our contact form for more information on how we can help and support you in becoming crack cocaine free today.

Sources and References

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