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The Effects of Cocaine

The Effects of Cocaine: Understanding What Cocaine Can Do to Users

For an individual that is addicted to cocaine, it can feel as though your entire body is running on days of sleep, users will feel over-energized and often show this in their mannerisms.  However, this is not the only effect that cocaine can have on an individual, this is merely one of the feelings that is obtained after it is used. What cocaine does to the remainder of a users’ body is the opposite of energizing, and even just one use can lead to serious, long-term effects on the human body.

Cocaine in the Body of a User

Once cocaine is sniffed, smoked or injected it enters into the bloodstream and into the brain, where it takes one a role as a dopamine transportation blocker.  Typically it will block the transfer sites and prevent reuptake, so dopamine remains in synapse for longer, causing the high feeling. Because dopamine is associated with attention, learning, movement and more, it will begin to affect other areas of the body, causing increased blood pressure, movement and even hallucinations.

When cocaine is ingested the user will feel energized, begin moving excessively and often talk much more than usual. This alert feeling can last for several hours, however once the effects of the drug have worn off it is followed by depression, sluggishness and anxiety, leaving the need to smoke again seem much more appealing. Some additional short-term symptoms include increased blood pressure due to constricted blood vessels, dilated pupils, decreased appetite and increased body temperature.

Long-Term Effects of Cocaine Use

Those addicts who have exposed themselves to years of cocaine use, it is not uncommon to see long-term effects in the mind.  Paranoia can develop, as well as mood alterations and irritability.  There are many users of cocaine that continue having auditory hallucinations after extended use of the drug, along with restlessness and nervousness. Other common health problems can stem from cocaine, including heart attack, stroke and lung failure, all of which could potentially lead to death. For those that inject cocaine intravenously, they are also more likely to contract an infectious disease, such as hepatitis and HIV/AIDS, because of improper sanitation of injection needles.  Fatal overdose is always possible, even with just one use of the drug, whether it is injected, smoked or snorted.

Understanding the drug information that is associated with cocaine and the health issues that a user can face are all important to the treatment of a cocaine user. Drug rehabilitation is possible for users of this drug, however it is a long and arduous process, yet the possibility of leading a full life is well worth it.