I want to stop using crack, or at least take a break. what can i do?
The first few hours or days after quitting can be hard to cope with, but if you fight cravings and avoid the drug, you’ll soon start to feel better. the urge to use may be strong at first, but will fade over time.
The following strategies can help you quit crack:
- Find out what treatment programs are available.
- Attend a self-help group to get support and meet other people in recovery.
- stay away from all other drugs, including alcohol.
- book yourself into a detox center for a few days.
- do not carry money or bank cards with you.
- stay away from people who use drugs and places with which you associate drug use.
- build your strength through healthy eating, sleep and exercise.
- stay busy with work, school, and other activities that don’t involve substance use.
- Tell your friends and family you’re not using and ask for their support.
- Use a Pyrex pipe. Pipes made of thin glass, plastic, tin cans, or copper increase the dangers of smoking crack. Pyrex pipes are available from harm reduction services.
- Use a hash pipe screen. Using cigarette ash or glitter as a screen can damage your lungs and expose you to dangerous toxins.
- always use your own pipe. even a drop of blood can transmit hepatitis c, which can live outside the body for a long time. People can get more than one strain of Hepatitis C, so avoid sharing even if you and the person you want to share with are both positive for Hepatitis C.
- Protect your lips. Avoid burns by wrapping a thick rubber band or a rolled-up cardboard matchbox around the end of your pipe. help your lips heal by using lip balm.
- Avoid alcohol and other drugs. Combining crack with other drugs increases health risks.
- Take breaks and limit use. Allow 30 minutes or more when using, and a few days or weeks between runs, to give your body and brain a rest. taking breaks and using it for shorter periods also helps smooth out and shorten the shock that follows a race.
- remember to eat, drink and sleep. eat before use. drink water while using. give your body a chance to rest.
- Pay rent and bills and buy food first. It’s hard to budget your money while you’re on a crack run.
- carry condoms. Crack can increase people’s sexual desire, or lead people to trade sex for drug money. to be prepared.
- Get connected with a harm reduction program. Ask your community health center or public health office if there is one near you.
- Get help right away if you feel down or depressed after using and think you might harm yourself.
- do not share needles, or any work, with others
- rotate injection sites
- avoid the neck, breasts, fingers, feet, groin, and penis
- Get more information about safe injections from a harm reduction program or community health center.
- contact: 1 866 531-2600
- access camh: call 416 535-8501 and select option 2
- the works: 416 392-0520 (a harm reduction service in toronto)
I’m going to keep using crack. What can I do to be more secure?
Is smoking crack safer than injecting?
Smoking crack and injecting powdered cocaine cause immediate and intense effects, so both are dangerous for addiction and overdose. Smoking may be safer because injecting can damage veins, cause abscesses, and increase the risk of hiv, hepatitis, and other serious infections. if injected:
Is there help?
Of the many types of services available, there is one that is right for you. harm reduction services can help you be safer while using. group or individual counseling or a stay in a drug treatment center can help you cut down or stop using crack altogether.
Even if treatment hasn’t worked for you in the past, it’s worth trying again. some people try treatment several times before it works, and many need long-term support to stay drug-free. To prevent relapse, avoid all other mood-altering drugs (including alcohol) and continue to meet with your group or counselor for support, for as long as you need it. For more information, ask your doctor or contact one of the agencies listed below.