Just Say No! A Profile Of Cocaine And Its Effects On Two Lives

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Just Say No! A Profile Of Cocaine and It's Effects On Two Lives

     Greek mythology tells of a young god, Morpheus, god of dreams. Morpheus planted a special purple flower called the lotus. Soon the people of the land smelled the sweet flowers and ate them. They immediately feel into a deep and troubled sleep. From that day on, they awoke only long enough to gather the lotus flowers and sleep again. Eventually they lost their strength and willpower and wanted only to drift in and out of sleep.1 The story of the lotus-eaters and similar tales from ancient times show us that drug use is not new. Today this problem threatens all of our society. The worst, most deadly of drugs, however, is cocaine. This
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Because the brain tells the heart how fast and often to beat, using cocaine can make the heart pump so fast that it damages the muscles or can lead to a heart attack. Since the brain also tells the lungs how often and how deep to breath, the use of cocaine can cause those signals to get mixed up leading to a shortness of breath or the complete failure of the lungs to work causing instant death. The use of cocaine is seriously addicting.
Monkeys will keep giving themselves doses of cocaine until they die; most people will follow the same trend.3
     The world of sports has many sad examples of people who made the poor choice to use drugs. Perhaps the saddest is that of Lenny Bias. Len Bias was a star on the basketball court. He was in perfect health. Len played basketball for the University of Maryland. Some people thought he would be the best basketball player ever. Then one day his dreams came true. He was drafted no.
1 by the Boston Celtics to play professional basketball. "He could jump through the roof," said Red Auerbach, president of the Celtics4. Len was so happy that he went out to celebrate. He snorted cocaine, probably for the first time.
That would be his last time--cocaine stopped his heart and he died instantly.
Dr. Louis Caplan, New England Medical Center Hospitals, says that using cocaine is like taking a chance on sudden death: "Cocaine's a loaded gun."5 Len Bias

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