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Cocaine Powder and Snorting Spoon
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Glass Cocaine Container and Snorting Spoon
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Rock Crack Cocaine Packaged To Sell on the Streets
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Powdered Crack Cocaine

What It Is

Cocaine is a white powder obtained from the leaves of the coca plant and has powerful stimulant properties similar to those of amphetamines.

Street Names

Cocaine and Crack Coke, Charlie, Snow, Rock

How It Is Taken

Soluble cocaine is sometimes injected, possibly mixed with heroin (this mixture is sometimes called ‘Speedball’) but the usual method is for a small amount (usually called a ‘line’) to be sniffed or ‘snorted’ up the nose through a small tube and is absorbed into the blood via the nasal membrane. However, more recently a smokeable form of freebase cocaine called crack is become increasingly more common. Crack is purer and more concentrated than soluble cocaine and is absorbed into the body faster than if it is snorted.

What It Does

As with amphetamines, cocaine produces feelings of well-being, mental exhilaration, reduced appetite and great physical strength and mental capacity. However, the intended feelings can often be replaced by feelings of anxiety or panic.

When snorted the effects of cocaine peak in about 15-30 minutes and then fade, which often encourages users to repeat the dose in order to maintain the effect. Large doses or lots of quickly repeated doses over a period of hours or days can lead to extreme states of agitation, anxiety, paranoia and possibly hallucinations which generally fade when the drug leaves the body. After effects can include tiredness and depression.

Excessive doses can in rare cases cause death from heart failure. Effects of long-term use Users do not necessarily develop tolerance, but are often tempted to increase doses for a more intense effect. Discontinuation of the drug produces tiredness, sleepiness and depression, which can encourage users to take more to alleviate these side effects

Cocaine is thought to produce a physical dependency in some people, although this is still being debated and researched. Crack does produce a strong physical dependency.

With regular heavy use increasingly unpleasant symptoms occur. Euphoria is replaced by an uncomfortable state of restlessness, over excitability and feelings of nausea. With continued use this can lead to paranoid psychosis. Regular users may appear chronically nervous, excitable and paranoid. Confusion with exhaustion, due to lack of sleep is common. These effects may all disappear once use is stopped, however a paranoid mental state may be irreversible and permanent.

Repeated snorting of cocaine may also damage the nasal membranes and the structure separating the nostrils. Smoking crack can produce severe respiratory problems.

Medical Uses

Cocaine is used medical as a local anesthetic and vasoconstrictor in Europe. In the United States cocaine was once used to treat sinusitis, hay fever and chronic fatigue. Cocaine was also used in wines and soft drinks such as Coca Cola. Cocaine was widely used until it was outlawed by the Harrison Act in 1914 during the temperance movement.

Seeking help at a cocaine abuse rehabilitation center is highly recommended for cocaine addicts who want a change in their lives.