Effects of Cocaine on the Body and Brain

How Cocaine Effects the Body and BrainCocaine is a nervous system stimulant that comes from the extracts of the leaves of the coca plant, which grows in the Andes region of South America. Its primary use is in medicine, where it is used in surgical procedures as an anesthetic agent and as an effective pain reliever prescribed post-operatively.

It is still first and foremost illegal to distribute cocaine for non-medically sanctioned purposes.
Sadly, in spite of this cocaine is one of the most extensively used drugs in the world. Street forms of cocaine are available to almost anybody who has deep pockets. The effects of cocaine can cause devastating financial ruin and extreme risks to both mental and physical health.

How is Cocaine Introduced into the Body?

The effects of cocaine have powerful negative effects on the body in every imaginable way. This substance is known to have rapid effects on the nervous system. Even with the repeated serious news about people dying from its use, there are still countless reckless individuals who dare to use cocaine in its various forms.

  • Powdered cocaine. This is popularly known as “coke” or “blow.” This form of cocaine can be snorted or dissolved in water and injected intravenously.
  • Crack cocaine. On the streets, cocaine is sometimes otherwise termed as “crack” or “rock.” This is the “freebase” form of cocaine, which makes it possible to inhale or smoke.

Effects of Cocaine on the Brain

Effects of Cocaine on the Brain and BodyDepending on how it is administered, cocaine is a powerful brain stimulant with effects that can last from 15 minutes to as much as 1 hour. Normally, drugs and other medications cannot enter the brain or pass through the blood-brain barrier, but cocaine can. This makes it the most potent and highly dangerous of all street drugs ever to be manufactured and abused by drug addicts.

The effects of cocaine can either be psychological or physiological. Here are the expected immediate effects of cocaine on the nervous system, when users have a false sense of reality:

  • Perceived increased alertness
  • Perceived increased sexual confidence
  • Perceived euphoria
  • Perceived increased physical or athletic performance

In truth, the effects of cocaine are far from positive. With long term use and addiction, the psychological effects of cocaine lead to:

  • Anxiety
  • Agitation
  • Paranoia and restlessness
  • Decreased serotonin and dopamine levels
  • Depression, potentially severe
  • Delusions
  • Insomnia or hyper insomnia and bad dreams

The shattering physical effects of cocaine are:

  • Tremors
  • Increased body temperature and blood pressure
  • Convulsions
  • Palpitation or tachycardia (accelerated heartbeat)
  • Coughing up of blood
  • Breathing difficulties
  • Itchiness
  • Sore throat
  • Tooth decay and gingivitis (gum disease)
  • Chest pain
  • Asthma
  • Headaches

Not surprisingly, cocaine use can ultimately cause death, either immediately or with prolonged addiction. However, even if a person outlives the more immediate harmful effects of cocaine, the symptoms of the following conditions and diseases may be expected as an outcome of continuous use of this devastating drug:

  • Lupus
  • Heart problems
  • Glomerulonephritis (a kidney disease that can lead to renal failure)
  • Stevens-Johnson syndrome (a life-threatening skin condition)
  • Goodpasture’s syndrome (an autoimmune disease attacking the lungs and kidneys)
  • Vasculitis (the inflammatory destruction of blood vessels)

Battle the Effects of Cocaine Before It’s Too Late

Anyone can see that cocaine addiction is a very serious problem, and one that should be addressed without delay. If you know someone imprisoned by the horrific effects of cocaine addiction, seek help immediately.

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