The life of a crack and heroin addict is difficult and staying alive for a long time without overdosing is often a miracle. Both of these street drugs are not only very addicting but also dangerous and illegal. For persons who are using hard drugs like crack and heroin, they typically score their drugs from unsafe, crime-filled neighborhoods. Since heroin and crack are so extremely addicting, users and addicts will become addicted to the effects of both. The drug neighborhoods are aware of how certain types of addicts behave, and they prey on them and will often push heroin on crack addicts and vice versa. In other words, these two drugs are infamous for being used together in drug-seeking cultures. Heroin is medically classified as a depressant and is considered a downer. At its opposite, crack cocaine is classified as a stimulant and is regarded as an upper. People that use heroin or crack will often use the other to come down or to wake up. Therefore, it is prevalent for heroin addicts and cracks addicts to use both of these drugs together so they can experience both effects evenly without one or the other dominating. Combing drugs that cause opposite reactions can be lethal. Heroin is an opiate drug that causes a person to feel relaxed and drowsy and slows their respiratory breathing and heart rate. Crack causes a person to feel excited and awake and raises the heart and breathing rate. When they are combined, the person’s body is forced to tolerate two very different physical reactions. The effects that heroin and crack have together is known as a speedball. Speed balling became popular in the 1970s and got media attention when actor John Belushi and later Chris Farley were said to have died from an overdose of heroin and cocaine and other hard drugs. Speedballs originated as a mixture of powder cocaine and heroin to be injected. Often addicts will combine crack cocaine (a solid rock form of cocaine) with heroin and either smoke or inject them simultaneously.
What Can Mixing Heroin and Crack Do to Your Body
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, mixing heroin and cocaine to get high confuses normal bodily reactions but also raises the risk for accidental overdose from heroin alone. Since crack cocaine wears off much faster than heroin, a person may use too much heroin thinking the cocaine will counter the effects, but since cocaine is a short high, the effects of cocaine wear off, and then that person will have ingested too much heroin and overdose. Per the NIDA definition:“A speedball is a combination of heroin and cocaine. Cocaine acts as a stimulant and heroin acts as a depressant, so taking them together creates a sort of “push-pull” reaction in the body and brain. Taking stimulants with depressants can result in uncontrolled and uncoordinated motor skills, and also the risk of death from stroke, heart attack, aneurysm, or respiratory failure. Respiratory failure is particularly likely with speedballs because the effects of cocaine wear off far more quickly than the effects of heroin. Fatal slowing of the breathing can occur when the stimulating cocaine wears off and the full effects of the heroin are felt on their own.” (NIDA) Because using crack and heroin separately can cause a life-threatening condition to occur, that risk doubles when they are used as one. The mixing of heroin and crack makes most addicts also begin to engage in risky behaviors and to commit crimes to buy both. The cost of heroin and crack individually is expensive, but when someone is combining them they are also paying more to get both. Drugs using cultures, particularly with these two drugs, commit theft, scam friends and family or strangers for money, and in time crack and heroin addicts will get arrested. The cycle of crack and heroin mixing as an addiction only gets worse. Most addicts will end up in jail or homeless because of their drug use. The treatment programs that are most successful in helping people addicted to both heroin and crack works by applying multiple treatment methods and practices that target emotional challenges, social behaviors, diagnose and treat mental health conditions, teach coping skills, introduce recovering addicts to spiritual practices and beliefs, as well as prescribing safe medications to help them in their recovery.
Are You Struggling With Heroin and Crack Addiction?
Evoke Wellness at Miramar has sustained rates of success for helping addicts remain drug and alcohol-free for good. Our treatment center relies on the most current and well-respected forms of therapy, counseling, and group counseling led by an expert on addiction or a trained facilitator. Evoke Wellness at Miramar also provides every client with an individualized treatment plan that is tailored to meet their personal needs. To speak with one of our treatment team members, first call our admissions number to find out about bed availability, payment plans, and health insurance coverage. We will recommend the types of programs that are best for you or your loved one and their addiction to heroin and crack or other substances.