Since cocaine is illegal to possess, sell, and manufacture, one of the major risks of abusing cocaine, regardless of whether it’s crack vs cocaine, is potential legal consequences. Abusing cocaine or crack can lead to major changes to your brain chemistry, which can take time to heal from.
In 2017, nearly 1 million Americans ages 12 and older struggled with a cocaine abuse disorder. Addiction is a progressive disease that almost always requires treatment in order to fully recover from. As you progress through the stages of addiction, you can develop a physical and/or psychological dependence that can cause you to make your drug of choice the most important thing in your life.
The Difference Between Crack vs Cocaine
So, what exactly is the difference between crack vs cocaine? Both crack and cocaine are powerful central nervous system stimulants that create energizing and euphoric effects. Both substances are also illegal narcotics. The main difference between crack vs cocaine is that crack comes in a solid form and is typically smoked, while cocaine comes in a powder form and is usually inhaled.
Another difference between crack vs cocaine is that crack produces a more intense, albeit much shorter, high than cocaine. This can make it easier to develop a dependency on crack vs cocaine. Users sometimes inject crack or cocaine in order to create a more powerful and potent high, which can increase the risks of experiencing an overdose.
Cost is also another major difference between crack vs cocaine. Crack is cheaper than cocaine, which can make using crack more economical. Unfortunately, smoking crack can cause damage to your respiratory system and teeth. Whether you develop a dependency on crack vs cocaine, treatment is typically necessary because your brain associates your drug of choice and everything that reminds you of it, with pleasure. This can lead to intense and powerful cravings whenever you’re exposed to triggers.
Common signs of a crack or cocaine addiction include:
- Inability to stop or control your use
- Needing to use in order to feel normal
- Spending the majority of your time using or thinking about using
- Neglecting responsibilities in order to use
How Crack and Cocaine Addictions are Treated
Once you develop a substance abuse disorder, treatment is oftentimes necessary in order to recover because of the major changes addiction causes to your brain and body. Treatment can occur in an inpatient or outpatient setting, depending on your needs. Inpatient programs offer heightened structure and support, which makes it an excellent option if you have a severe or lengthy addiction history.
Both inpatient and outpatient programs use evidence-based therapy and holistic therapy options to provide you with the guidance and support you need to overcome addiction. Evidence-based treatments, like cognitive behavioral therapy and dialectical behavior therapy, help you identify and change negative thinking patterns, emotions, and behaviors. Holistic therapies focus on treating your mind, body, and spirit, and can help you learn how to cope with negative emotions like stress and anxiety.
Finding Help Today
Don’t let addiction control your life. When you struggle with a crack vs cocaine addiction, early treatment is essential to your recovery. Treatment ensures that you have the support, compassion, and understanding you need to recover. To find out more about our programs, or to start your recovery journey, reach out to us today at 855.786.1978.
Licensed Physician and Surgeon
Dr. Beth Dunlap, a board-certified addiction medicine and family medicine physician, and is the medical director at Northern Illinois Recovery Center. She is responsible for overseeing all the integrated medical services at both campuses. Beth completed medical school, residency, and fellowship at Northwestern University, where she continues to serve on the faculty as a member of the Department of Family and Community Medicine. She has extensive experience in addiction medicine at all levels of care, and her clinical interests include integrated primary care and addiction medicine, harm reduction, and medication-assisted treatment.