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Cocaine

Sounds Like: coe.kayne.

Classification: Central Nervous System (CNS) Stimulant

Controlled Substance Act Schedule: II

Other names for Cocaine

  • Blow
  • Coca
  • Coke
  • Flake
  • Snow
  • Soda Cot
  • Rock

Cocaine Addiction

What is Cocaine?

Cocaine is a powder-like substance with a high risk for abuse and addiction. When taken, it produces an almost immediate and powerful high or “rush.” Cocaine belongs to a class of drugs called Central Nervous System (CNS) stimulants. The drug is normally distributed in a white, crystal-like powder originating from natural coca leaves, plants grown in South America.

People who use cocaine experience intense feelings of euphoria, happiness and alertness. High amounts of cocaine or prolonged use can result in a crash that leaves people feeling exhausted, sleep-deprived and depressed for several days. Following a crash, users are known to crave cocaine again.

Surgeons used cocaine as a local anesthetic to block pain before medical procedures at one point. Cocaine is still used for medical purposes like pain management prior to surgery. Still, it’s mostly diluted or “cut” with household products like baking soda or flour to increase illegal street supplies and profits for drug dealers.

Cocaine Addiction

Cocaine has a high risk for abuse and addiction. The drug releases dopamine, a reward-seeking chemical, in the brain that can make users develop a tolerance. Cocaine’s short-term effects last anywhere from 15 minutes to one hour depending on the amount taken and how it’s taken. As a result, many people take higher doses of cocaine or binge the stimulant to experience the initial “rush.” 

If their body adjusts to how often they use cocaine, that’s a sign of physical and mental dependence. People might experience withdrawal symptoms like increased blood pressure or insomnia when they stop injecting, inhaling or snorting the drug, another sign of physical or mental dependence.

When people abuse cocaine and develop substance use disorder, they could require medically-supervised detox and an individualized treatment plan to recover from the powerful stimulant. 

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Intended Use of Cocaine

Cocaine hydrochloride is acceptable for medical use in the United States. It’s used to numb the upper respiratory tract (nose, mouth, throat, etc.) and manage pain and bleeding during surgery. Some people combine it with heroin, an opioid pain reliever, in a mixture called “speedball.” Cocaine is also taken with alcohol or other street drugs for recreational use.

How Cocaine Is Taken

Take cocaine exactly as directed by your doctor or pharmacist.

Cocaine is administered and/or abused in different forms. Medical professionals inject cocaine hydrochloride for pain management during surgical procedures. People often snort illegal powdered cocaine or inject it into their veins after dissolving it in water. Crack cocaine base, which looks like rocks or chunks, can be smoked when heated.

Side Effects of
Cocaine

If any of these side effects become severe, immediately call a doctor.

  • Dilated pupils
  • Increased heart rate
  • Increased blood pressure
  • Restlessness
  • Excitement

Signs of an
Addiction to Cocaine

Uncontrolled cravings for cocaine

Unsuccessful attempts to stop using cocaine

Prioritizing use of cocaine over spending time with family or friends

Legal or financial problems

Physical withdrawal symptoms when reducing or stopping cocaine use

Use of cocaine despite adverse or negative behaviors

Stealing items or money to purchase cocaine

Cocaine
Abuse Facts

Cocaine is the second-most popular recreational drug in the United States (behind marijuana)

Colombia is the world’s largest cocaine producer

In 2020, more than five million people ages 12 or older reported using cocaine within the past 12 months