Cocaine Base (Crack Cocaine)

As mentioned above, powder cocaine cannot be smoked unless chemically
altered using the dangerous freebasing technique. Late summer of 1985, New
York City drug dealers put an end to the need for freebasing powder cocaine.
These same drug entrepreneurs would revolutionize the sale of cocaine and
bring terror to the streets of America.

The exact inventor of crack cocaine is unknown, but the lasting effects of
their discovery is well documented. The benefits of cocaine base (crack) for
the drug dealers have only been surpassed by the problems it has created for
society in general. In many ways crack is the perfect drug. As we will see,
crack cocaine was a stroke of marketing genius.

Powder cocaine is messy and hard to handle, crack however is a hard [Image]
rock-like substance easy to handle and conceal. Powder cocaine has
to be inhaled or injected. Inhaling cocaine creates a variety of sinus and
nasal problems. Inhaling also takes longer for the drug to take affect.
Injecting powder cocaine to get a better and faster high became very
unpopular with advent of the A.I.D.S. crisis. Powder cocaine is frequently
cut or mixed with a variety of substances in order to raise profit mar- gins
of drug dealers. This has made purchasing powder cocaine more hazardous for
the drug abuser as they cannot be sure of the content of the drug they are
buying. Finally, freebasing was thought too dangerous a prospect for most
cocaine users. Crack cocaine overcame all these detractors to cocaine usage.

Crack cocaine is easily manufactured from powder cocaine without dangerous
solvents, using common household ingredients. Crack is smokeable, creating
an intense and immediate high. There is no need for needles, nor is there
the damage to nasal and sinus passages associated with "snorting" cocaine.

Crack is nearly pure cocaine. Dosages of crack are smaller, meaning there is
no need for diluting the cocaine with various substances. Because of the
smaller dosages, crack is more profitable for the dealer. The smaller dosage
units also mean it is cheaper for the user to purchase a small amount and
get high. The cheaper price per unit also makes it available to broader
market. But there is a greater asset crack provides for the dealer. Crack
cocaine can be instantly addictive.

The symptoms of abuse are consistent to those of powder cocaine, except
crack provides a more intense high. Heavy perspiration and ear ringing are
also not uncommon when smoking crack. Again, the intense addictive
properties of crack often cause the abuser to go on binges during which they
continuously smoke crack until they drop from fatigue or run out of money to
purchase more.

Category: Science