How Long Does Crack Stay in Your System?
Wondering About Crack for a Drug Test?
Have you indulged in a bit of crack smoking recently? Are you worried about dirty urine for your PO, or that job interview you have lined up? Crack cocaine can be a dangerous drug, but you can come back from the edge of addiction.
Keep reading our guide to find out the answers to all your questions about ‘How long does crack stay in your system!’ Learn about effective forms of treatment with Icarus Behavioral Health that can help you never experience anxiety about urine or drug testing ever again!
What is Cocaine?
Cocaine is a stimulant drug made from the South American coca plant leaves. It is a powerful nervous system stimulant. It is a stimulant that blocks the reabsorption of the neurotransmitters dopamine, serotonin, and norepinephrine by nerve cells in the brain. This action causes an excess of these neurotransmitters to be available to stimulate receptors on neighboring cells.
In turn, the body’s reaction produces a euphoric effect that can be addictive. Cocaine is considered a Schedule II substance under the Controlled Substances Act. This classification means it has a high potential for abuse and can lead to severe psychological or physical dependence.
What is Crack Cocaine?
Crack cocaine is a more potent form of cocaine that can be smoked. It is often made from baking soda, water, and cocaine hydrochloride (salt). As it’s smoked, crack produces an intense high that lasts only a few minutes but can leave the user craving more. Crack cocaine has been around since the early 1980s.
The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) says that the two forms of cocaine are both dangerous and addictive. However, crack cocaine addiction is more heinous than regular cocaine because of the primary method of ingestion. Smoking cocaine allows the drug’s effects to be more potent.
Crack vs Powdered Cocaine
The effects of crack cocaine are similar to those of regular cocaine, but they come on faster and are more intense. That’s because smoking crack delivers the drug directly into the bloodstream through the lungs rather than through the digestive system as would occur when snorting or ingesting it orally.
Furthermore, because of the method of ingestion, addicts who use crack tend to do so in binges — often smoking several “hits” at once — which can lead to dependence and addiction within weeks or months of starting use.
What is a Substance Abuse Disorder?
Substance use disorders (SUDs) are characterized by repeated use of drugs or alcohol despite adverse consequences. Excessive substance use is considered a disease, but it’s also a learned behavior. Some people learn to rely on drugs for relief from the pain of daily life — whether it be physical or emotional.
Other people may use drugs to feel good or have fun with friends. There’s no shortage of stories where teens or adults have been peer-pressured into taking drugs to “fit in.”
Substance abuse can lead to addiction — which is when someone is physically dependent on a drug and needs it to feel normal; they have lost control over their ability to stop using the drug even though they know it has negative consequences on their life, and they continue to use despite harmful effects of their drug use.
Addiction stems from dependency. Drinking alcohol, for example, is something that many people do. However, when you do it enough, your body becomes used to the feeling, and you need more of the substance to feel the same way. Over time, this leads to your body craving the substance more. A side effect of this is that the substance will stay in your system for the same amount of time, even though you don’t get the effects. A drug test will still be able to detect it.
What are the Risk Factors That Can Lead to Addiction?
Several risk factors can lead to excessive cocaine use and, eventually, a substance abuse disorder. A risk factor is anything that increases the likelihood of developing a specific condition or disease. Some of the more common risk factors are:
The genes you inherit from your parents can make you more or less likely to develop a substance use disorder. Genetics may also explain why some people are more sensitive to the effects of drugs than others. For example, if your parents abused drugs or alcohol, there is an increased likelihood that you will develop an addiction as well.
Environmental factors such as peer pressure and stress can contribute to substance abuse disorders in teens and adults. Peer pressure is extreme during adolescence because teens want to fit in with their friends and be accepted by them. Stress at home or school can also lead people to turn to drugs or alcohol to cope with their mental health issues.
Pre-existing mental health issues
People with mental health disorders such as depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), or another mental health disorder may be at higher risk of developing a substance abuse disorder than those without these conditions.
For example, people with PTSD may turn to drugs or alcohol to cope with their anxiety symptoms after experiencing trauma. This trauma can be acute, like military conflict or violence. However, emotional abuse can also result in PTSD.
What are the Consequences of a Cocaine Use Disorder?
Crack or cocaine, in general, should not be used lightly. It is highly addictive, and the truth is that it destroys lives. The consequences of a spiral into crack cocaine addiction are far-reaching and disastrous. There are health, social, and even legal problems that can be suffered as a result of a cocaine abuse habit.
Cocaine use can lead to cardiovascular problems such as stroke and heart attack, but research suggests that this risk may be greater among those who smoke crack than among those who snort powder cocaine. Some studies have found that smoking crack causes more damage to blood vessels than snorting it does.
Other studies have found no difference between smoking and snorting regarding vascular damage. However, both methods can increase blood pressure and cause chest pain—symptoms that could be mistaken for a heart attack or stroke. Smoking crack also increases the risk of developing respiratory infections.
The social consequences of crack cocaine addiction can be devastating, especially when the user becomes homeless or loses his family. The American Psychiatric Association recognizes that these consequences are often related to the biological effects of the drug itself, as well as the lifestyle choices that a person makes while using.
People addicted to crack cocaine often have trouble maintaining relationships with friends and family members because substance use becomes essential in their lives — it takes priority over everything else in their lives, including people who care deeply about them.
This misplaced priority can lead to feelings of loneliness and can create or exacerbate mental health issues like depression and other mental health issues that make it even harder for these individuals to stop.
Financial and Legal Issues
Persons with substance use disorders also often struggle to hold a job. They may be unable to keep up with the responsibilities and requirements of a position and, thus, end up being fired. Drug-addicted persons may spend time in jail or prison for committing crimes related to their addiction. These crimes might include theft, robbery, or assault, as well as drug-related offenses such as possessing illegal substances or manufacturing drugs.
The truth is that health-wise and social-wise, persons addicted to crack cocaine often predictably spiral as these problems all feed into one another. They can tend to stack.
What Tests Are Used to Detect Cocaine in the Body?
Cocaine can be detected in the body for up to three days after the last use. However, if a person has been using cocaine for some time, it may take weeks or months before they are spotless of all traces of the drug in their system as it can tend to stay in your system for an extended period of tune. Several drug tests can determine how long cocaine remains in the body. Let us examine them.
Urine tests are most frequently used to detect cocaine. A urine test can be performed at home or in a medical facility. The test involves urinating into a cup, which is then analyzed for traces of cocaine by either immunoassay or chromatography-mass spectrometry (MS). Immunoassays measure the presence of cocaine metabolites, substances produced when the body breaks down the drug.
Chromatography-MS identifies specific compounds that indicate the presence of cocaine. Because urine tests are relatively easy to administer and inexpensive, they are often used outside clinical settings.
Hair and Blood Testing for Crack and Cocaine
Another popular test is called the hair follicle drug test. A hair test is often used by employers who want to screen their employees for drug use before hiring them or by probation officers who want to ensure that their clients adhere to their probation agreement’s terms.
This is done by using a hair sample to determine whether or not cocaine is present or has been present in the person’s system.
Blood tests can also be used to detect cocaine use because they show whether someone has recently taken the drug. However, they cannot reveal exactly when it was taken. Blood tests require more advanced equipment than urine tests and are more expensive than urine testing kits available over the counter at convenience stores or pharmacies.
How Long Does Crack Stay in Your System?
Right alongside the question of HOW is cocaine tested for in a drug screening is the question of how long does cocaine stay detectable in the human body? The answer to this differs depending on the various drug tests or testing methods administered.
The longer an individual uses cocaine, the higher the concentration of cocaine will be in their hair. Of course, cocaine can also lead to hair loss in some users, meaning this test might be rendered moot. The fact remains that a person who has been using cocaine for ten years will have higher levels of cocaine in their hair than someone who only used cocaine once or twice a month.
Still, whether you’ve used a gram of cocaine in the past several days or an ounce, the residual effects can remain in your body as cocaine metabolites are detectable by various tests for different durations of time. Let’s review the most common forms of testing.
Urine Test for Cocaine
Urine tests are designed to detect the presence of cocaine in the body’s waste. The liver metabolizes the drug itself, and traces of it will remain in urine for up to two days after use. In some cases, users have been known to test positive using urine tests up to two weeks after their last dose.
Hair Testing for Coke
Several hair tests are available, but the TLC (Trichloroacetic Acid) test is the most commonly used. This test can detect cocaine use within the last 90 days. This happens because cocaine has a very short half-life in the body and leaves traces on the hair follicles that are still detectable after three months.
Blood Tests for Crack
This test can detect cocaine up to two days after use; however, it has been known to sometimes produce a false positive due to cross-reactions with other drugs like methadone or benzodiazepines.
Why is Rehab Recommended for Cocaine Addiction?
Professional rehab treatment is the best option for dealing with cocaine addiction because it offers a safe environment where you can learn how to live a life free from drugs. Addiction treatment in a high-quality facility is the best option. Professional medical advice and guidance at a reputable rehab center can make all the difference between regaining control and going deeper into the spiral.
When you choose a rehab facility specializing in cocaine addiction treatment, you can be confident that your chances of success are higher. These facilities have a proven track record of helping people overcome their addictions. They also offer a variety of treatments and counseling options that can help you break free from cocaine addiction once and for all.
Reasons to Choose Treatment for Crack Dependence
Your cocaine rehab treatment will differ depending on which program type you choose and what stage of treatment you are entering.
Drug and alcohol rehab centers offer inpatient treatment as an option for people who need medical detox and/or long-term rehabilitation from their substance abuse problem. These programs allow patients to live at the facility while they receive treatment and counseling from licensed professionals. Patients attend group therapy sessions daily and may also participate in individual counseling sessions.
Outpatient programs are ideal for people who want to maintain their current lifestyle while working on their recovery at the same time. These programs provide counseling services in an outpatient setting (such as a doctor’s office) so patients can continue their life obligations.
Get Help for Cocaine and Crack at Icarus Behavioral Health
At Icarus Behavioral Health, our licensed medical professionals and staff are standing by to help. Our treatment centers employ advanced recovery systems and cutting-edge addiction treatment options to ensure that when you walk in our doors, you walk out healed.
Give yourself the break you deserve from cocaine and drug test worries and make a confidential call to Icarus and get your recovery started today!