Crack: Information You Should Know

Addiction to crack can be fatal without treatment, but recovery is possible. For a drug rehab in Hawaii, call Hawaii Island Recovery today.

Crack cocaine, otherwise known as crack, is an illegal and highly addictive substance that people use, and abuse, to experience its effects that lead to feeling an immediate high after the substance enters the bloodstream. Because of how simple and relatively inexpensive this drug is to produce, it can easily be accessed and used by people of all ages. 

According to the National Drug Intelligence Center (NDIC), it is estimated that 6,222,000 individuals ages twelve or older have used crack at least one time in their lifetime, and many of those individuals end up addicted after, and because of, one single use. Even if an individual’s intention is not to become addicted to crack, this is often what happens because of the substance’s highly addictive quality. 

At Hawaii Island Recovery, we recognize how easy it is for someone to become addicted by using crack, but not choosing drug addiction, as drug addiction is a brain-based disorder that requires appropriate treatment with trained professionals to make healing and recovery possible. Because of this, we have many state-of-the-art treatment programs in our beautiful facility customized to meet you where you are and walk alongside you as you begin to get to discover your true self outside of addiction. 

How Crack Works

According to additional information from the NDIC, crack cocaine is primarily ingested through smoking or snorting. Upon ingestion, the drug produces an immediate euphoric sensation, leaving the individual feeling “high,” which is what encourages continued use even after harm to an individual’s body, mind, and relationships has been done. 

Addiction to crack happens as pathways in the brain begin to rewire themselves to become dependent on crack use as the only way to experience pleasure and elevated moods. Those who use this drug end up needing greater quantities of crack cocaine to experience the same “high” that led them to addiction in the first place. 

Without both continued use and higher doses when using, individuals abusing crack begin experiencing symptoms of withdrawal until treatment is started and they are supported as they begin their journey toward sobriety and recovery. 

Short-Term Side Effects of Using Crack

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), crack has several immediate short-term effects on the body that are quickly experienced, but short-lived. These symptoms include, but are not limited to: 

  • Feelings of euphoria
  • Increase in energy
  • Mental alertness
  • Hypersensitivity to sound, light, and touch
  • Decreased need for sleep
  • Constricted blood vessels
  • Dilated pupils
  • Increased body temperature, heart rate, and blood pressure
  • Erratic and violent behavior
  • Feelings of restlessness, irritability, anxiety, panic, and paranoia
  • Muscle tremors, vertigo, and muscle twitches

Short-term side effects always lead to long-term physiological, neurological, and cognitive symptoms that can be fatal without appropriate care, treatment, and support. 

Long-Term Side Effects of Using Crack 

In addition to short-term effects on the body, crack leaves both the body and mind with many harmful long-term impacts on the body leading to physiological, cognitive, and mental impairment. These side effects include, but are not limited to: 

  • Constant irritability, anxiety, and paranoia
  • Psychosis and/or hallucinations
  • Loss of sense of smell and nosebleeds
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Hoarseness of the voice
  • Nasal septum impairment
  • Tears and ulcerations in the digestive tract
  • Loss of appetite, leading to weight loss and malnourishment
  • Toxic effects on the heart and cardiovascular system
  • Increased risk of stroke
  • Movement disorders, such as Parkinson’s Disease
  • Cognitive deficits, such as difficulty paying attention, impulse inhibition, and memory loss

It’s important to remember that, although recovery is possible with appropriate treatment, many of the long-term effects of crack use may stay with the individual. 

Signs of Crack Addiction

There are many telltale signs, similar to symptoms of drug abuse and addiction to other substances, that you or a loved one may be struggling with crack addiction. Symptoms of drug addiction include, but are not limited to: 

  • Dependence on crack use in order to function
  • Increased tolerance to amounts of crack used
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Increased fatigue
  • Increased appetite
  • Unpleasant dreams and insomnia
  • Slower thinking
  • Social withdrawal and isolation
  • Conflict in relationships

If you or a loved one is experiencing any of the above symptoms, it is vital to enter treatment to begin mitigating the short and long-term effects the use of crack has on the body and to experience healing. At Hawaii Island Recovery, our drug and alcohol inpatient treatment centers offer a variety of holistic, evidence-based, and customized treatment programs to help you do just that. 

Treatment for Crack Addiction 

Treatment for any type of substance abuse and addiction begins with a medically supervised detox period, where individuals are in the care of trained professionals as they clear their body from the substance so they can begin further treatment to heal the root of what is causing drug addiction in the first place. 

Continued treatment often includes a stay in a residential treatment facility that specializes in drug addiction recovery. At Hawaii Island Recovery, we meet with individuals to map out their treatment plan in a way that makes sense for them and includes a combination of psychotherapies, group therapies, and experiential programming to ensure we treat the whole person, mind, body, and spirit. 

After residential treatment, many individuals begin aftercare programs, such as outpatient and continuing care programs, where they are supported as they reintegrate into their home, community, and life. 

Recovery from crack addiction is challenging, but also possible with the appropriate care, treatment, and support to guide you in accessing your innate ability to heal from the inside out. 

Crack cocaine is a highly addictive substance that can lead to fatality without proper treatment. Hawaii Island Recovery recognizes how difficult it is to take the first step toward healing in reaching out to begin treatment, which is essential to finding sobriety and recovery from addiction. In coming to our center for alcohol and drug treatment, you will be among a team of professionals and peers that support your success and goals in recovery. To learn more about Hawaii Island Recovery and our big island substance abuse center, call us today at (866) 390-5070.

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If you or a loved one need help, call Hawaii Island Recovery toll-free right now.