Crack Cocaine Addiction Treatment: Dealing with a Deadly Killer
Cocaine has a false image of being suave and sophisticated. Its chemically altered cousin, crack, has no such reputation. Crack is a deadly, fast acting, intensely addictive chemical derivative of cocaine. Crack is a fast hitting drug with a speedy delivery system, and it creates a powerful addiction that’s infamously difficult to overcome.
Understanding crack addiction and the route out
- Cocaine kicked up a notch
- Dangers of crack use
- How addiction works
- Getting off of crack using addiction treatments
A Concentrated Experience
Crack cocaine is created through a chemical freebasing process that leads to a product that can be quickly metabolized – even more quickly than ordinary cocaine powder. Crack, formed using common baking soda as a base. The finished product can be smoked, snorted, or taken in a range of other ways. It produces a fast, extreme high – and an equally intense depression following the high. A user gets all the ups and downs of the original medication, and then some.
Crack’s Damage to the Body
Crack cocaine is among the more unforgiving of drugs. The most common and devastating damage is circulatory. Crack cocaine causes the same spiking blood pressure generated by cocaine. The drug causes high blood pressure, and damage throughout the circulatory system. Heart attacks are common, as are strokes. Crack cocaine can also cause convulsions, crawling sensations, paranoia, and hysteria. Depression and mood spikes are common, as are failures in judgment and failures in social exchange.
What Makes Addiction Work?
Our bodies encourage us to do survival-oriented things and discourage us from doing non-survival oriented things through a complex system of pleasure and pain, comfort and discomfort, all orchestrated by bio-chemicals in our systems. One of the most primary of these chemicals is “dopamine,” which is a substance that moderates and regulates the many enzymes that generate happiness and pleasure. When there’s plenty in the brain, our bodies are happy. When there’s too little, our bodies become sad.
Crack cocaine causes our bodies to produce and retain larger amounts of dopamine, very quickly. In essence, something very bad for the body is able to make use of our own chemical systems to brainwash you into doing a bad thing as though it were good, and avoid doing a good thing as though it were bad.
Getting Off of Crack
To escape the crack addiction, users have to give up the drug, experience all the intense discomfort of withdrawal, and proceed to build an entirely new set of habits and behaviors in their lives. Few, if any, can live anything remotely like the life they lived while addicted, and even the life before addiction may be out of reach.
The process begins with detox, as the remains of the drugs are flushed from the body. Detox is unpleasant, often dangerous, and often humiliating. After detox, an addict must then experience extensive training and behavior modification in-clinic, along with personalized talk counseling, group therapy, and physical therapy to restore some level of strength and health before returning to the outer world. Finally, patients must commit to long-term supportive counseling, as few addictions can be held at bay without ongoing commitment and a stable support group.
To find the correct therapy program to help deal with crack addiction in you, a friend or a family member, turn to your medical community and the resources of a good referral service. Medical resources, governmental agencies, religious institutions, and professional referral services can provide many good suggested services to draw from.