Crack cocaine addiction affects the lives of millions of individuals, mainly between the ages of 18 and 25 every day. Many people seek rehab for cocaine use and most of these rehab seekers use crack.
For the individual wanting to quit a crack cocaine addiction, they may experience different stages of withdrawal that may include despair, depression, mood swings, and avoidance. Since crack cocaine is water soluble, these symptoms can last a varying amount of time depending on the amount of the drug that was used, how often crack cocaine was used, and how long it was used.
While the individual is using crack cocaine, they may have auditory hallucinations such as hearing people talking, hearing sirens, or music. They may also imagine that they see bugs crawling on their skin in visual hallucinations. In some individuals there is a high level of paranoia and crack users become suspicious of any movement.
Within a few hours after the last time crack was used, the individual may become consumed with having enough money to purchase more crack. They may sell personal items, beg, or steal to be able to buy crack. Within the first 24 hours after the last time crack cocaine was used, the individual may "crash" and experience feelings of deep depression and possibly have suicidal thoughts. The crash may be followed by feelings of successfully beating their crack cocaine "addiction".
Crack cocaine users may show personality and behavioral changes toward family and friends. They may become withdrawn and their mood may fluctuate from depressed to energetic. Users may neglect their personal hygiene and often exhibit flu-like symptoms such as a runny, irritated nose and watery, red eyes.
There are a number of different programs available to help with crack cocaine use including 12 Step programs, holistic programs and Cognitive Behavioral Education (CBE) programs. 12 Step programs promote the false belief that crack cocaine use stems from an incurable brain disease of addiction that you genetically inherited from your family through an as yet undiscovered addiction gene.
While 12 Step programs are typically free of cost to the substance user through government or charitable funding, you truly get what you pay for when coming to these programs. 12 Step programs are built on the belief that the only treatment is meetings for the rest of your life, total abstinence and surrendering to a belief in a higher power. They also believe that you will fail in your attempts to resist using crack cocaine and that relapse is absolutely going to happen. 12 Step programs are telling you that, while abstinence is a treatment and in their opinion the only treatment, you will not be able to abstain, you will relapse and you are going to fail. This philosophy goes a long way toward explaining why there is a 95% dropout rate among 12 Step programs.
Cognitive Behavioral Education (CBE) teaches that crack cocaine use is not a disease, but it is a choice that you make to use drugs. There is no such thing as an addiction gene and there is no crack cocaine disease or addiction, rather it is a habitual behavior. Like any other behavior, crack cocaine use can be changed, stopped and controlled if you wish to do so. Once there are productive habits established that meet your behavioral needs as well or better than substance use, the need for crack use will slowly fade. No matter how badly you feel "hooked" on this drug, be assured you have the power to change your life. You can start a new chapter in your life making the choice to move forward free of substance use. Call one of our Guest Service Consultants to find out how you can take the next step to find your own personal freedom from crack cocaine use.