Cocaine Abuse Essay

1532 WordsSep 16, 20137 Pages
Cocaine Abuse Carla Baker COM/156 August 18, 2013 Stanley Weiss Cocaine Abuse According to a national survey performed in 2011 by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, approximately 35.9 million Americans aged 12 and older have tried cocaine at least once in their lifetime and approximately 2.1 million Americans are regular users (Substance Abuse & Mental Health, 2012). Cocaine is a highly addictive stimulant drug that has gratifying yet dangerous short term physical effects, devastating long term physical effects, and intense psychological effects. Cocaine is a crystalline atropine alkaloid that is produced from the leaves of the coca plant. Cocaine was first introduced into the United States in the 1880’s, where…show more content…
Some cocaine users will stay up for days, even weeks, and will not eat, which results in their bodies becoming malnourished. Continued cocaine use can cause sleep deprivation, which can then lead to aggressive and paranoid behavior. Cocaine is such a powerful stimulant and it can keep a user awake for days, sometimes longer, which then results in the user hallucinating from lack of sleep. Hallucinating can then cause the user to become aggressive and paranoid because they are hearing and seeing things that are not really there. Continued cocaine use can also cause severe tooth decay and reproductive damage in both men and women. Cocaine causes severe dry mouth, which further increases the risk of tooth decay, and cocaine can also cause tooth decay because the user will grind their teeth while using the drug. Continued cocaine use can cause heart attack, stroke, respiratory failure, and convulsions. Cocaine use has been linked to many types of heart disease. Cocaine has been found to trigger chaotic heart rhythms, called ventricular fibrillation; accelerate heartbeat and breathing, and increase blood pressure and body temperature. Physical symptoms may include chest pain, nausea, blurred vision, fever, muscle spasms, convulsions, coma, and death. Different routes of cocaine administration can produce different adverse effects. Users who snort cocaine can experience the loss of their sense of smell, nosebleeds, problems with swallowing, hoarseness, and an
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