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Five Reasons Why Crack Cocaine Will Ruin Your Life

Five-Reasons-Why-Crack-Will-Ruin-Your-Life

Suffering from crack

Maria Salgado was a stay-at-home mom for five years. She was a member of the PTA and loved spending time with her three children, ages 7, 5, and 1. After the birth of her third child, however, she experienced postpartum depression, but failed to receive help for her condition. Although she spoke with her husband about her depression, she shook it off as “temporary” and something she would get over. Unfortunately, she never got over it. Every day she struggled to find the energy to get out of bed, so when a friend of hers introduced her to an alternative, she gladly accepted even though she knew the alternative was dangerous.

The first time she tried crack cocaine, Maria felt an overwhelming sense of energy. Her friend suggested she try the drug early in the morning, and she would find her energy and vitality improved. The friend had been taking the drug for a couple of months for similar reasons and found she accomplished a lot. At first, Maria had inhibitions, but the friend assured her crack cocaine is not like it used to be and hardly anyone uses it anymore long term. In their case, they would use it only as needed to overcome their depression and lack of energy, and they would smoke it rather than use intravenously.

Unfortunately, Maria and her friend misinterpreted the effects of addiction the drug causes. Crack cocaine is highly addictive, and for the addict, the cravings are the worst part of the addiction. Thus, to maintain the crave, people spend a lot of money. When money becomes an issue, they turn to less than honest means to maintain their habit.

Crack is a form of cocaine. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, people develop the drug by using the base form of cocaine and mixing it with ammonia or sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) and water. Users usually heat to remove the hydrochloride to produce a smokable substance. This drug is a powerfully addictive stimulant that directly affects the brain. Sadly, crack cocaine has become somewhat taboo in today’s society. Although the drug is not as popular as it was in the 1980-90s, it is one of the oldest psychoactive substances people have abused in some form. Even though the number of cocaine and crack cocaine usage has steadily declined, 3.7 percent of adults over the age of 26 in the U.S. are lifetime users of the drug. Not to mention 1 to 2.1 of teenagers from 8th to 12 grade are lifetime users. Regardless of the decline in crack usage, this drug ruins lives.

The Ways Crack Cocaine Will Ruin Your Life

Individuals who use crack cocaine have been known to have a hard time overcoming the cravings, lose family relationships, get in trouble with the law, develop life threatening diseases, and in many cases, face death.

1. Becoming Addicted

The use of crack cocaine always puts users at the risk of developing an addiction. A crack addiction will produce uncontrollable cravings and withdrawal symptoms if the drug is not taken. The addict will stop at nothing to get more crack, even if that means stealing or prostituting.

2. Loss of Family Relationships

As in the case of Maria, her usage of crack cocaine started simple, but the short-term and long-term effects changed her life forever, including her relationship with her husband and children. When her husband found out about her addiction, he was upset. He loved her though and encouraged her to get help. After seeking counseling and going through rehabilitation twice, however, Mr. Salgado could not take any more. Upon Maria’s second relapse, she wiped out their children’s education fund and a personal savings he had established for emergencies. Beyond the financial burden of her addiction, he could not handle the change in her personality. She no longer was the woman he loved because the drug had changed her.

After learning Maria had an affair on him with her drug supplier, he finally let her go. He fought and easily won custody of the three children because of Maria’s continued use of crack cocaine and her growing criminal record. Now, after 10 years, Maria still uses the drug and has lost her family, her beautiful looks, and her beautiful personality. Her children also want nothing to do with her. They are ashamed of her and tell their friends their mother is “dead.”

3. Legal Troubles

Addiction is a disease that affects both brain and behavior, and people who suffer from this disease tend to engage in deviant behavior in order to support their habit. For instance, Maria lived in a middle class home. Her parents were middle class, and her husband worked in a financial institution. He made good money to support her and their three children. She never lacked for anything. However, because her husband did not know about her addiction for some time, she started pawning jewelry and depleting bank accounts. At first, Mr. Salgado did not know because Maria intelligently found ways to avoid suspicion. As her addiction grew, she became more careless. As mentioned previously, Maria depleted savings and pawned many valuable family items that can never be replaced. After she lost her family, she was arrested several times for theft and dealing narcotics. She even sold her body to slate her addiction. Maria came from a family with no legal problems, but because of her addiction, Maria has now served three different jail sentences related to her addiction.

4. Life Threatening Diseases

The National Institute on Drug Addiction (NIDA) notes that in addition to the short-term physiological effects such as anxiety, panic attacks, and hallucinations, the use of crack cocaine creates the disease of addiction and relapse. For people who snort the drug, they can lose sense of smell, experience chronic runny and bleeding noses, experience loss of appetite which results in malnourishment. Additionally, those individuals who inject the drug develop track marks, and through the sharing of needles and sexual favors to feed their addiction, users are at increased risk of contracting human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immune deficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS) and viral hepatitis. Not to mention, within 2 years, nearly 40 percent of injection drug users are exposed to Hepatitis C. After five years, IDU users have a 50 to 80 percent chance of developing this disease.

5. An Unfortunate Outcome

Beyond these many side effects, many deaths occur from this drug because of cardiac arrest, respiratory failure, seizures, overdoses, and worse, death.

Unfortunately, Maria Salgado suffered from a common problem of postpartum depression. Instead of seeking help, she let a so-called friend give her bad advice. She made the mistake in thinking she was different and only needed it once in a while to give her energy. However, her decision cost her a family and a life. Luckily, she has yet to experience the life threatening diseases, but as long as she continues in her addiction, the outcomes will eventually catch up to her.

References:

  1. National Institute on Drug Addiction: Cocaine: Abuse and Addiction.
  2. National Institute on Drug Addiction: Cocaine