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Cocaine very rarely comes in the form of the pure drug. Often, sellers would mix cocaine with other substances and drugs including talcum powder and amphetamines. Off the streets, cocaine is called different names including Coke, C, snow, blow, and flake.

  • Cocaine is considered an illicit drug in most states in the country and is mostly available in a white powder form for users to sniff via the nostrils.
  • The substance is also soluble in water making it easy to inject cocaine directly into the blood.
  • The chemical procedures of making cocaine can make it into a free base form or a crack form, which is the crystal-looking cocaine that is often smoked.

Cocaine is often sold in a crystalline powder

Crack cocaine is produced using cocaine hydrochloride which is chemically processed with sodium bicarbonate or ammonia and water. Such process results in cocaine that comes as rocks, chunks or chips. Cocaine is a very addictive drug that can interfere with the normal functions of the brain, especially the production of chemicals generating the sensation of pleasure.

Cocaine users, however, have to take in more of the substance over time for your brain to continue functioning normally. These individuals are not able to control their use and need of the substance in the long term. Most of them already know about the negative consequences of the drug on their brain, health, and social functions but still, they continue to have cravings for cocaine as they can “crash” without it. If you, or anybody, choose to withdraw from cocaine, you may experience mood swings, sleeplessness, irritation, exhaustion, and oversleeping among others.

A study revealed that cocaine has an effect on blood pressure and heart rate

Cocaine can increase both your blood pressure and your heart rate and may even interfere with oxygenated blood flow to your heart. The lack of oxygenated blood to the heart can lead to a host of complications, which may include heart attacks, chest pain, tissue diseases, and even stroke.

Cocaine and Brain Aging

The University of Cambridge researchers revealed that cocaine can quickly age your brain as it can minimize the grey matter region that controls your memory, attention,  decision-making ability, and age the other parts of your brain prematurely. The rate of the reduction of the grey matter in the brain of a cocaine user is almost double that of non-users.

Cocaine and Heart Attack

Researchers at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center conducted a study on the effects of cocaine and discovered that cocaine can increase a person’s risk of getting a heart attack to 24 times in 1 hour. The study was conducted in 1999 in Boston and a new discovery was remarked in 2008 revealing around 10% of patients between 18-45 years of age experiencing a heart attack have used cocaine over 10 times in their life.

Cocaine and Depression

Those who use cocaine are at a higher risk of getting depression than those who do not use the illicit substance. A study conducted by the University of Michigan and Ann Arbor VA Medical Center in 2009 revealed that cocaine can deplete VMAT2 levels, the same protein that produces the chemical dopamine in your brain to trigger pleasure. The depletion of dopamine can increase your risk of getting diagnosed with depression.

Cocaine and Respiratory Diseases

Cocaine can destroy your nasal tissue each time you snort or smoke it. You may not notice the irritation or the pain caused by the drug on your nasal tissue as cocaine can numb the pain, but can also damage your septum causing a runny nose.

Cocaine and Sex

You could have more stamina and increased sex drive when you use cocaine. However, these effects will be significantly reduced over time. Just like any other addictive drug, cocaine can eventually lead to impotence when used for a prolonged time. Also, the stamina and increased sex drive you can experience are short-lived and unsustainable.

You may contract several infectious diseases like HIV and hepatitis due to sharing needles. You can also overdose on cocaine, commit a crime, lose interest in life, and turn to violence. Cocaine users often withdraw from social life including time spent with family, friends, school, or sports. Also, if you combine cocaine with other substances, you can increase your risk of an overdose.

Cocaine use during pregnancy can also lead to an underdeveloped baby, a miscarriage or the baby getting addicted to the drug. Detox centers in Kansas can provide more information about this.

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