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Information on substance abuse, the different types of substance abuse drugs and the effects they have on their user is not always easily available.
At Step Away we aim to help provide individuals with information on alcohol abuse and substance abuse facts which helps them in making better decisions about alcohol and drug abuse and highlights why substance dependency is a real problem.
“Charley, Snow, Blow, Coke, Packet, Flake, Dandruff, Candy, Harry, Powder”
The name Cocaine originates from "coca" (after the plant which it is extracted from the Cocoa bush) and the alkaloid suffix "-ine", forming "cocaine".
There are many reasons for abusing this substance. To name a few, it is a stimulant, an appetite suppressant, and a non-specific voltage gated sodium channel blocker, which also allows it to be used to produce anaesthesia at low doses.
Here is what Wikipeadia has to say further:
"Biologically, cocaine acts as a serotonin–norepinephrine–dopamine reuptake inhibitor, also known as a triple reuptake inhibitor (TRI). It is addictive due to its effect on the mesolimbic reward pathway. It is markedly more dangerous than other CNS stimulants, including the entire amphetamine drug class, at high doses due to its effect on sodium channels, as blockade of Nav1.5 can cause sudden cardiac death."
The drug is mainly 'snorted' by inhaling through a straw or a rolled up banknote into the nostrils. Many habitual cocaine users appear to have persistent colds and runny noses, they may even preempt your question by saying that they do.
The 'high' provides crystal clarity of thought, an instant sobriety, and often coincides with the abuse of alcohol. The sense of being in control provides an illusory boost to the self-esteem of the cocaine user.
Cocaine is regularly seen as the status-heavy drug and is often closely linked with alcohol dependency and binge drinking.
As the drug interferes with the way the brain processes chemicals, the user constantly needs more and more just to feel 'sharp' or 'normal'.
Therefore these individuals who abuse the substance and become addicted to cocaine (as with most other drugs) lose interest in other areas of life and unintentionally devote all of their time to hunting their next line or fix.
Chronic abuse of cocaine can lead to the person losing all interest in anything else, and family, friends and responsibilities are completely abandoned. It is not uncommon for cocaine to destroy their own professional and family lives and for the cocaine user to lose everything.
Personality changes, violent outrages, aggressive and irritable behaviour that verges on the paranoid delusional are symptoms of chronic cocaine abuse and privation behaviour.
Cocaine has powerful and extremely negative effects on the heart, brain, and emotions. Therefore the reality of the drug hits after the high. Often individuals who fall prey to this drug find themselves stuck with its long-term effects and life threatening consequences. However, it should be known that even the occasional cocaine users run the risk of serious neurological damage and/or sudden death.
Again from wikipedia:
"Cocaine dependence (or addiction) is psychological dependency on the regular use of cocaine. Cocaine dependency can result in physiological damage, lethargy, psychosis, depression, akathisia, and fatal overdose. Common signs of snorting cocaine, the most popular method of ingestion, include: loss of the sense of smell, nosebleeds, difficulty swallowing, hoarseness, a chronically runny nose."
Before the drug became a more openly-used and available drug it was utilised by the more “upper class” individual or professional, but in recent years members from all slices of society have started to indulge in it more and more.
This could be because the costs of making cocaine have been minimised dramatically by using everyday household chemical products to make the drug and also using them to increase the quantity of a batch by “cutting” the drug with these products.
As the substance abuse of this drug as well as its cheaper form, Crack Cocaine which is smoked becomes more and more prevalent, the need for a more informing outreach to potential and current users is growing. There is considerable drug usage amongst young people, students and young professionals with some disposable income.
Once addicted, it is difficult to stop using cocaine without professional help. The good news is that recovery from cocaine addiction is totally possible. Very high success rates can be achieved with treatment conducted at a licensed treatment centre.
Cocaine addiction treatment includes cognitive behavioral therapy, a collaborative treatment between therapists and addicted patients.
Step Away residential and outpatient treatment programs cover all aspects of cocaine addiction treatment. These programs may include:
At Step Away we believe that the better informed we are of the dangers of drug abuse the better we can make choices to live and to help others lead healthier, more fulfilling lives.
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