Cocaine can be snorted, injected and smoked, the main effect cocaine users seek is its stimulus on the central nervous system and the brains ability to process dopamine. This gives users with a cocaine addiction a euphoric high for a short period but continued taking of the drug means these periods get increasingly shorter and less powerful.
Along with the pleasurable feeling of euphoria, hyper-stimulation, increased energy levels and alertness, cocaine users can also experience constricted blood vessels, dilated pupils, sweats, palpitations and high blood pressure.
Continued unrestrained, regular use can lead to cocaine addiction and other, more serious problems such as restlessness, irritability and paranoia. Long-term users can also end up entering a state of paranoid psychosis and suffer with hallucinations. Think about stopping crack!
Along with the mental effects on the brain, cocaine addiction also brings an irregular heartbeat, the risk of heart failure, respiratory problems and strokes. Cocaine also suppresses a users appetite and those who have suffered with chronic addiction will look gaunt and drawn due to a poor diet.
The repeated misuse of cocaine can result in death due to heart attacks, brain haemorrhaging, convulsions and respiratory failure. Care should also be taken when coming off cocaine as withdrawal can lead to depressions, fatigue, anxiety, sleeplessness and irritability. Anyone trying to kick cocaine addiction should contact their local health centre or rehab clinic where they can offer medication, support and advice during the initial, difficult stages.