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Overview of Crack Cocaine Detox detox

It was the mid-twentieth century when cocaine was introduced into the United States from South America in a major way. Similar to the current opiate epidemic we see today, cocaine became an epidemic of the 1970s, 1980s, and part of the 1990s. During the latter half of this period, one particular form of cocaine became extremely powerful. This form of cocaine became known as crack cocaine, and it involved “cooking” cocaine in such a way as to turn the powdery drug into solid chunks that could then be imbibed via smoking. In other words, crack cocaine became much like the freebase form of cocaine.
Although cocaine had made its way into the U.S. prior to the 1970s, it had previously been only a small threat compared to the mass amounts of the drug that made its way from Colombia into Florida. From Florida, the drug was dispatched throughout most of the remaining U.S. states. The genesis of crack cocaine actually owes to the dealers who supplied much of the country with cocaine; these individuals began the practice of adding filler substances into the cocaine. It diluted the drug, but increased its weight, giving them more product to sell. One of the main additives that they used was sodium bicarbonate, which is more readily known as baking soda.

Crack cocaine was created inadvertently while trying to separate the baking soda from cocaine. Substance abusers quickly realized that when cocaine and baking soda were added to water and heated, the process would create a different form of cocaine that dried into solid chunks and could be smoked. The name “crack” came from the crackling noise that the drug made when it was being smoked.

It didn’t take long for crack cocaine to gain a following. In just a short period, law enforcement began seeing the substance in all corners of the U.S. and were, at first, stumped as to what the substance was. Upon testing, they learned that the substance was essentially a smokable, freebase form of cocaine. Throughout the 1980s, crack cocaine surged in popularity. Users liked the drug — in fact, many of them came to prefer crack cocaine to regular cocaine — because it had a much more rapid onset compared to traditional, powdered cocaine. By smoking the drug, the onset of its effects were basically immediate; as well, the drug’s effects reached a faster and more prominent peak, making it a favorite means of consumption of those with a particular affinity for cocaine or other stimulant drugs.

Since the 1980s, there have been numerous other substances to be created and to rise in popularity. However, even with the rising variety of mind-altering substances that are available, crack cocaine has remained an extremely popular drug still used by many people today. In fact, there are even forms of addiction treatment specifically for individuals who have become dependent on crack cocaine. Therefore, we’re going to talk about one of the most important forms of treatment for individuals addicted to crack cocaine: detoxification.

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How Detoxing From Crack Cocaine Detox works

Although it’s certainly not a new substance, cocaine became popular in the very late 1970s and throughout the 1980s due to it being illegally imported from South America, particularly Columbia. There wasn’t anything quite like cocaine on the black market at the time of its introduction to the U.S. market, which is why it spread like wildfire. While the drug was traditionally imbibed in powdered or crystalline form, people began trying to find new and more effective means of ingesting cocaine so as to experience the most powerful effects from the drug as possible. That’s where crack cocaine comes into focus.

The shortest and most concise way to describe would be to say that crack cocaine is the freebase form of cocaine. It involves a certain preparation process by which regular, powdered cocaine is turned into larger crystalline chunks, which can be smoked in pipes like those used to smoke tobacco or marijuana. Specifically, the process involves combining powdered cocaine with baking soda, putting the mixture into water, and applying heat. The solution will heat up and melt, but when it begins cooling the cocaine and baking soda mixture turn into a chunk of crack cocaine that can be smoked.

As is the case with regular cocaine, crack cocaine has a number of specific effects that cause is to behave in ways that are characteristic of a stimulant. Moreover, the neurochemical effects of crack cocaine are almost identical to the effects of cocaine, causing spikes in neurochemicals that are associated with the reward and pleasure circuits of the brain. With continued abuse of crack cocaine over time, addicted is known to occur, requiring a period of detoxification in order for a person to regain his or her sobriety. As such, let’s move on to discuss the effects of crack cocaine, why crack cocaine detox is necessary, and what the crack cocaine detox process looks like.

WHAT DOES THE Crack Cocaine Detox DETOX PROCESS LOOK LIKE?

Nobody ever intends to become addicted to drugs. However, despite being completely aware of the risks involved, almost ten percent of the U.S. population experiments with substance abuse and becomes addicted. Although we’re experiencing a major heroin and painkiller epidemic today, other drugs — include crack cocaine — remain a major problem, robbing people of their health, their relationships, their careers, their homes, and in some cases even their lives.

But that’s where detoxification comes in. For people who have become addicted to crack cocaine, the purpose of a crack cocaine detox is to help them return to a state of physical health and allow them to break their physical dependence on crack cocaine so that they can proceed to more advanced stages of recovery in which they can begin participating in actual addiction treatment programs. That may sound straightforward, but it’s a lot easier said than done. The reason that addicts remain in active addiction rather than getting sober is because of the oftentimes debilitating withdrawals that they experience when they’re without the substances to which they’re addicted. The purpose of a crack cocaine detox program is to make it easier and more comfortable for a person to detox from crack cocaine.

Mind-altering, chemical substances exist on a spectrum. On the one end are depressant-like substances, which include alcohol, benzodiazepines, and heroin. The other end consists of stimulants, including crystal methamphetamine, cocaine, and crack cocaine. As a stimulant, crack cocaine causes a number of the effects that one would associate with stimulant drugs such as an increase in energy, insomnia, increased body temperature, increased heart rate, increased blood pressure, and decreased appetite. However, there are also a number of more specific effects that are unique to crack cocaine as a stimulant in particular. For instance, many crack cocaine users report the experience of euphoria, anxiety, depression, and panic. In fact, there have been instances of people using crack cocaine and having major panic attacks. But it’s in the brain where crack cocaine takes its hold. Upon imbibing crack cocaine, the brain experiences a flood of dopamine and norepinephrine, which are the cause of the euphoria. Moreover, the crack cocaine inhibits the reuptake of these neurochemicals, keeping the brain at extremely high levels of those chemicals, but also causing a major “crash” when the drug wears off. When deprived of the drug, a person experience this crash as well as the physical withdrawal effects that we’ll describe below.

Crack Cocaine Detox Detox Withdrawals

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Mind-altering, chemical substances exist on a spectrum. On the one end are depressant-like substances, which include alcohol, benzodiazepines, and heroin. The other end consists of stimulants, including crystal methamphetamine, cocaine, and crack cocaine. As a stimulant, crack cocaine causes a number of the effects that one would associate with stimulant drugs such as an increase in energy, insomnia, increased body temperature, increased heart rate, increased blood pressure, and decreased appetite. However, there are also a number of more specific effects that are unique to crack cocaine as a stimulant in particular. For instance, many crack cocaine users report the experience of euphoria, anxiety, depression, and panic. In fact, there have been instances of people using crack cocaine and having major panic attacks. But it’s in the brain where crack cocaine takes its hold. Upon imbibing crack cocaine, the brain experiences a flood of dopamine and norepinephrine, which are the cause of the euphoria. Moreover, the crack cocaine inhibits the reuptake of these neurochemicals, keeping the brain at extremely high levels of those chemicals, but also causing a major “crash” when the drug wears off. When deprived of the drug, a person experience this crash as well as the physical withdrawal effects that we’ll describe below.

List of Crack Cocaine Detox Withdrawal Symptoms

  • Decrease in energy
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Increased heart rate
  • Increase in blood pressure
  • Headaches
  • Dysphoria
  • Loss of appetite
  • Depression
  • Racing thoughts
  • Panic attacks

Can you detox from Crack Cocaine Detox at home?

If recovery was easy, there would be many, many more people doing it. As it stands, people who are caught in the throes of active addiction find it more manageable to remain in the throes of addiction than to try to overcome their chemical dependencies through recovery. As we mentioned previously, a large part of this is because of the widespread fear that many addicts have of the recovery progress. Fearful of the physical pain they expect they’ll feel in recovery, they continue trying to sustain their substance abuse problems through whatever means necessary. And those who do attempt recovery will often try to do so on their own while at home. However, people addicted to crack cocaine or any other substance are typically discouraged from detoxing on their own at their homes for a couple key reasons. For one thing, the treatments and services available at an actual crack cocaine detox facility ensure that a person is more comfortable during the detox process, which also makes crack cocaine detoxification successful more often than it would be without accompanying treatment. Perhaps most importantly, cocaine detox programs ensure that addicts are safe during the detoxification process by providing them with round-the-clock supervision and medical care.

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How long does it take to detox from Crack Cocaine Detox

There’s no right or wrong way to overcome an addiction. Although finding an addiction treatment program is considered the best way to recover from addiction, everyone’s needs are different and unique. Everyone responds differently to various types of treatments. As such, it’s very difficult to predict exactly how much time a person will need to detox from crack cocaine. However, on average the peak of withdrawal symptoms occurs at approximately 72 hours after the last dose of crack cocaine. After one to two weeks, a person will have typically progressed through the majority of physical withdrawal symptoms and will be ready to progress into the next stages of recovery.

  • In 2007, more than 95 percent of the individuals convicted of crimes that involved crack cocaine were convicted of crack cocaine trafficking.
  • Each year, over six million Americans over the age of 12 report trying cocaine for the first time.
  • In a study, it was estimated that at any given time, almost half a million people will have used crack cocaine at least once over the past month.
  • Relapse rates after treatment are estimated to be as low as 40 percent and as high as 90 percent, depending on the source; however, statistics continue to show that the relapse rates for recovery crack cocaine addicts are significantly higher than the overall average.
  • Annually, crack cocaine accounts for no less than 70 percent of all admissions to addiction treatment programs in which cocaine was the substance to which the individual was addicted.