Are you living with an addiction to cocaine? We at Rehab Guide offer the most reliable treatment programme to set you on the path to recovery. Say goodbye to cocaine addiction once for all by choosing our rehab therapy.
What exactly is cocaine and how can it lead to addiction? It is a powerful but short-acting stimulant, designed to create euphoria. A white powder derived from the coca plant or Erythoxylon coca, stemming from coca shrub leaves, a plant from South America. Cocaine is a recreational drug, often referred to as coke, C or Charlie.
For those in the throes of addiction, cocaine comes in many forms. It can be smoked, snorted or taken intravenously in a solution. Crack cocaine is a free base; smokable version often referred to as crack. It is created by what is called “cooking” cocaine in baking soda and water, forming crystals or tiny rocks.
People living with addiction can smoke through a so-called crack pipe; usually, a bong or an improvised item like a ripped open cola can. Crack addiction was rife in some US inner cities in the mid-eighties, but now its use, along with its availability has grown alarmingly. Crack is considered the most effective form of the drug, i.e. the most addictive, where cases of addiction are so high we are said to be facing a crack epidemic.
There was a time when some thought only the rich or famous could fall prey to cocaine addiction. However, there are thousands of people across the UK who may partake on the weekend or on a night out. They may misguidedly believe alcohol and cocaine go together to make for an enjoyable evening. But alcohol and coke can be a dangerous combination.
It is said you have twenty times more chance of sudden death if you take cocaine and alcohol together, rather than use coke on its own. If you indeed mix coke and alcohol you had an increased risk of a fatal overdose from substance levels which only had a ten per cent chance of being lethal if you had taken the drug by itself, only highlighting the dangers of combining alcohol with cocaine.
Last year reportedly, addiction levels in the UK saw drug poisoning deaths reach record figures. It had seen cocaine fatalities in parts of the country rise by 16% to 371, considered the highest since 1993. Records state most deaths occurred in men between the ages of 30 and 49. Many attribute the rise in mortality rates to a heightened purity of cocaine, making it far more dangerous.
Some people are not fully aware of the short-term effects of taking the drug, which can partly lead to addiction. For instance, the substance creates a fleeting, intense high which instantly leads to a comedown, the classic drawback of addiction. It can bring on negative moods, edginess and anxiety, along with insomnia and loss of appetite. They may also invariably feel cravings for more of the drug, resulting in addiction.
Users must also be aware of the long-term effects of taking cocaine. It can affect a person’s sleep pattern and cause them to lose weight by not eating, leading to malnutrition.
Those living with addiction can suffer from various psychiatric problems. They may suffer from irritability and mood swings to apathy, delirium and confused exhaustion. There is a greater chance of developing an addiction and may experience tactile and auditory hallucinations, culminating in severe depression.
Users may also display the physical signs of addiction. These range from liver, kidney and lung damage to affecting the blood vessels in the heart and brain, among other ailments. Those taking cocaine risk an increased heart rate, sweats, and enlarged pupils. There is an enhanced chance of addiction, blood infections and high blood pressure, which can lead to heart attacks and strokes, or even sudden death.
There are risks in even administering cocaine. Some choose to snort the drug, often called nasal insufflation. The cocaine, in powdered form, is regularly cut into lines and can be sniffed through a straw, a rolled-up bank note or a scrap of paper.
However, for those either experimenting with cocaine or have an addiction, snorting can be hazardous. It can cause bleeding and widespread damage to the tissue around the nose and nostrils. The effects of snorting cocaine can begin rapidly but may only last for up to half an hour. They can lead to physical conditions such as sinusitis, hoarseness, loss of sense of smell and problems swallowing, among others.
Injecting cocaine, otherwise known as “shooting” is considered the most dangerous method of administering the drug, where converting it into a solution creates the greatest levels in the bloodstream in the shortest amount of time. People with an addiction to cocaine who take it through a needle may be forced to make various attempts. They may have to inject repeatedly, but it is harder the more they try. Injecting can result in numerous health issues, such as vein collapse or vasoconstriction, or the narrowing of the blood vessels. It can bring on ringing in the ears, audio distortion and tinnitus commonly called a bell ringer. Those battling addiction also face a danger of blood-based infections and overdose.
It is not hard to see how people can develop an addiction to cocaine. It is the second most addictive drug in the world. Cocaine leads to addiction because of the effect it has on the brain and its reward pathway. It is the site of the chemical called dopamine. Neurons in the brain communicate by releasing the dopamine when they feel pleasure. It is then recycled back into the neuron. However, cocaine stops the dopamine from being recycled, and it begins to build up. Taking the drug causes huge levels of the chemical being released, which makes a person euphoric. If the process is repeated too often though it can alter the brains reward system, leading to addiction.
Are you living under the shadow of addiction and require assistance? Rehab Guide is on the cutting edge of rehabilitation treatment, helping people turn away from addiction and start a new life.