Crack cocaine is an extremely powerful and dangerous stimulant drug. Crack cocaine causes adverse side effects and serious health problems. Crack cocaine is very addicting and overdoses are very common.
A History of Crack Cocaine
The history of cocaine dates back thousands of years to ancient indigenous peoples in South America chewing the intoxicating erythroxylon coca leaves. Starting in the 1800’s, coca leaves were processed into various foods, drinks and medicines. During the 1900’s the widespread prevalence continued until cocaine became a standard recreational drug. During the 1980’s, the underground cocaine submarket exploded in America resulting in over 10 million cocaine addicts in 1982. As powder cocaine became less …show more content…
Up to 60 percent of the powder can be absorbed through the nose. Powdered cocaine that is directly injected into the bloodstream provides the strongest high. Finally, crack cocaine is smoked through a pipe. Inhaling crack provides a fast and intense high. Crack cocaine is one of the most highly addicted drugs because it stimulates the brain’s pleasure centers, which creates very intense and euphoric sensations. Tolerance and psychological dependence quickly develop as the addict continues to experience the powerful first high.
Crack cocaine has harmful short-term and long-term effects on the body. Cocaine has multiple effects on key neurotransmitters in the brain. Cocaine directly increase the release of dopamine, which is the central pleasure center neurotransmitter. Cocaine increases the release of norepinephrine, which increases alertness, heart rate and blood pressure. Higher serotonin levels interfere with sleep, mood and appetite. Long-term crack cocaine consumption results in permanently low levels of dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin. After crack enters the body, addicts may experience: