Cocaine has been abused for thousands of years, and cocaine addiction affects all types of people. The drug affects the user’s brain and gives them an overload of pleasure and euphoria, often referred to as a “high.” The pleasurable effects of cocaine use makes users abandon their everyday habits and tasks due to their craving for the drug. The drug is also effective as a pain reliever and it gives the user a high level of energy.
What is cocaine?
Cocaine is produced from the leaves of the erythroxylon coca bush. The bush grows mainly in South America. Cocaine is classified as a stimulant drug, and it stimulates the central nervous system. The drug is often sold in its crystalline or powdery form. It can also be cooked and hardened to make a rock-like substance, which is commonly referred to as “crack.”
Cocaine is an illegal substance that is heavily trafficked internationally. Drug users purchase it from dealers who make a large profit off of it. The drug lords who control the entire business become inconceivably wealthy. The plant that produces cocaine can be raised and harvested inexpensively, and the drug is sold at a high mark-up value.
Social Signs of Addiction
Cocaine is a drug that can easily become addictive. Addicts may show a lack of interest in usually stimulating hobbies. They may withdraw from their family and friends. Some users may become irritable and even confrontational and violent. This type of behavior will damage personal relationships and isolate the user from society. A cocaine addict will feel that the drug has taken over their life. They are obsessed with getting high to the point that they neglect everything else. They may lose their job or even neglect family responsibilities.
Cocaine can be quite expensive, especially for those who use it frequently. The user may develop serious financial trouble. Some users may steal or cheat family and friends in attempt to obtain money for their habit. This pattern of behavior will isolate the abuser even more.
Physical Signs of Cocaine Addiction
Cocaine gives the user a quick high, which is often followed by a low or depressed mood. Once the drug has worn off, the user may feel unusually sleepy and have a low level of energy. The addict may sleep too much, have frequent absences from school and work, and slip into a full-blown depression.
There are numerous physical signs that may indicate cocaine addiction. These signs may also overlap the symptoms of addiction to other substances. Common signs of cocaine abuse are listed below, but this list is not all inclusive:
–Frequent runny nose, sniffling
–Unexplained weight loss
In addition to the above, cocaine increases the blood pressure and body temperature of the user. It also speeds up the user’s heart rate and constricts the blood vessels. Because cocaine can adversely affect the nervous system, the user’s motor skills may be impaired. They may also have tremors and chills. The weight loss associated with addicts occurs because the drug suppresses the user’s appetite. Cocaine addicts often experience a weakened immune system, which makes them more susceptible to various types of illnesses.
Long-term cocaine addiction may result in auditory hallucinations and paranoia. The user may also have serious health problems, such as heart attack, stroke, lung problems, or fatality.
Breaking a cocaine habit is difficult, and it often requires help from professionals. Even with professional help, common withdrawal symptoms are:
–Unusual and frightening dreams
–Restlessness and irritability
–Increase in appetite
–Desire for more cocaine