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Side Effects of Prolonged Crack Cocaine Use

a person stares at his reflection in a mirror after prolonged crack cocaine use

Crack is a modified form of powdered cocaine with a rock-like appearance. Compared to powdered cocaine, it hits your system faster. Its effects also last for a shorter amount of time. Together, these two factors increase your risk of becoming addicted. Effective crack cocaine addiction treatment is available. This treatment can not only help you break your reliance on the drug. It can also potentially help limit your exposure to the other damaging effects of prolonged crack use.

Shared Effects of Crack Cocaine Use and Powdered Cocaine Use

Some harmful effects of prolonged crack cocaine use are not unique to crack. Instead, they’re shared in common with the prolonged use of powdered cocaine. One of the most prominent of these effects is addiction. You can potentially get addicted to crack faster than powdered cocaine. However, the difference is one of speed, not long-term consequences.

Prolonged use of powdered or crack cocaine can also damage organ systems throughout your body. The long list of physical effects you may experience includes:

Ulcers or tears in your gastrointestinal tract

  • Chronic chest pain
  • Inflamed heart tissue
  • Loss of some of your heart’s normal function
  • Ruptures in the aorta, your chief artery
  • Higher chances of having a stroke
  • Increased odds of seizures

Long-term cocaine use can also have serious mental health consequences. For example, you may experience bouts of paranoia or extreme irritability. You also increase your chances of experiencing psychotic episodes. Potential symptoms of these kinds of episodes include hallucinations, delusional thinking, and incoherent speech.

Prolonged use of either crack or powdered cocaine can also interfere with many of your core mental functions. That includes such things as your memory, ability to control your impulses, and ability to focus. It also includes your ability to reason and make sound decisions.

Unique Effects of Prolonged Crack Cocaine Use

Some prolonged effects of crack cocaine use are not typically found in people who use powdered cocaine. These effects are related to the repeated inhalation of crack smoke into your lungs. They include the possibility of seriously damaging your lung tissue. In addition, they have the worsening of any existing symptoms of asthma.

Potential Signs of Crack Use

You may be able to tell if someone is using crack. The potential indicators vary from person to person. However, the most likely signs of crack use include the following:

  • The visible presence of crack’s small, rock-like crystals
  • The presence of crack pipes made from glass, empty soda cans, or other materials
  • Burn marks on your loved one’s fingers
  • Significant changes in your loved one’s typical appetite
  • Oral health issues such as tooth decay or loss and receding or bleeding gums
  • Episodes of unexplained, extreme fatigue
  • Altered sleep habits

Your loved one may also go into withdrawal if they don’t receive their expected amount of the drug. Potential indicators of withdrawal include restlessness, agitation, depression, nightmares, and fatigue. They also include intense cravings for more crack. In addition, your loved one could potentially overdose on the drug.

Find Out More About the Impact of Prolonged Crack Cocaine Use at Evoke Wellness

Want to know more about the potential consequences of prolonged crack use? Talk to the addiction specialists at Evoke Wellness. Our knowledgeable staff can provide a fuller explanation of the risks that come with long-term use.

Are you or your loved one addicted to crack or powdered cocaine? With help from Evoke, you can break the cycle of active cocaine addiction. You can also take the steps needed to solidify your sobriety and remain abstinent in the future. For more information, call us today at 866.931.6429 or complete our online message form.