What is cocaine?

Cocaine is a high-quality stimulant drug that causes addiction to regular consumption. It is a colorless crystal, soluble in alcohol and ether, a powerful stimulant of the nervous system. It acts as a local anesthetic because it paralyzes the nerve endings, and leads to changes in behavior and raising energy similar to the effect of amphetamine. It is produced from the leaves of the plant called coca.

It is the main alkaloid of leaves of the coke plant (Erythroxylon coca), which grows in Colombia, Peru, and Bolivia. It originates in South America. This drug causes a sense of euphoria, energy, and perseverance. Cocaine is one of the most expensive and cleanest drugs. It is probably the most popular psychostimulatory drug ever produced.

Without any additional substances, it reaches an incredibly high price. Street dealers in cocaine add starch, baking powder, sugar or other substances such as procaine (local anesthetic) or stimulants such as amphetamines, in order to get in quantity and also get a bigger profit.

Cocaine effects

Cocaine causes hazardous physical effects such as accelerated heart rate and increased blood pressure, the stiffness of the jaw, enlarged pupils, and depending on the personality characteristics, aggressive behavior. Effects of taking cocaine project at the consumer almost immediately, i.e. right after the initial take-up, and only after a few minutes or hours, the indicated effects disappear. Some people find that cocaine helps them to perform certain physical and intellectual tasks faster and easier, while others feel that the effect is exactly the opposite.

The duration of euphoria under cocaine influence depends exclusively on the consumption method. The faster the absorption is, the more intense the feeling is, but the duration of the pleasant state is shorter.

Short-term physiological effects of cocaine include blood vessel vasoconstriction, pupil enlargement, increased body temperature, faster heart rate, and increased blood pressure. Large amounts (several hundred mg.) increase the euphoric feelings, but they can also lead to bizarre, humorous and violent behavior. It can come to breakthrough, dizziness, muscle contractions, paranoia or even, when the action is repeated, to a toxic reaction. Some consumers report restlessness, irritation, anxiety.

Cocaine side effects

In rare cases, sudden death may occur. Death caused by cocaine is often caused by a heart attack or collapse of the airways.

In physiological conditions, a special protein called dopamine transmitter recycles dopamine and returns it back to the neuron from which it was released. If cocaine is present, it binds to a dopamine transporter and blocks the normal recycling process and this results in the accumulation of dopamine in the synapse, which contributes to satisfaction and feeling of euphoria. Basic ways of bringing cocaine into the body are: oral and intravenous. And the consequences are different. They manifest in different ways, depending on the way of intake.


  • loss of smell
  • nose bleeding
  • hoarseness
  • nasal irritation
  • swallowing problems


  • severe bowel degeneration


  • increased risk of HIV and hepatitis C
  • veins damage
  • allergic reactions
  • paranoid psychosis

Long term effects of cocaine

  • strong psychic dependence
  • malnutrition (taking cocaine reduces appetite)
  • movement disorders (long-term consumption leads to Parkinson’s diseases)
  • irritability
  • restlessness
  • loss of contact with reality
  • hallucinations (that the ants, insects or snakes gobble on the skin)
  • poor performance
  • damage and reduction of renal function
  • sexual dysfunction

In women who use cocaine during pregnancy, there is a risk of premature labor and these children have lower body weight, smaller and shorter head than other babies.

Cocaine overdose

When a person takes approximately 95 mg/kg, the occurrence of seizures, convulsions, difficulty with breathing, kidney failure, and stroke lead to death within half an hour. What is important to note is the fact that the consumption of cocaine and alcohol creates a cocaethylene compound. The effects of this compound last longer and are more toxic to the body. The combination of these substances can also result in death.

How long does cocaine stay in your system?

This depends on many factors such as individual metabolism, amount of drug and possible drug tolerance. Depending on the way of intake, cocaine levels progress in the blood 30 minutes after ingestion, on average. It can be detected in blood up to 24h after the ingestion, in urine up to 30 days and in hair up to 90 days.

Is cocaine addictive?

Cocaine is a strong, addictive stimulant that directly affects the brain. An increase in cocaine tolerance forces the brain to produce the same effect as in the first intake. After some time, the euphoria caused by cocaine in the past or exposure to drug-related events can lead to cravings and recidivism. Long-term consumption begins to create addiction, and thus, causes intense physiological consequences. Some of them are depression, anxiety, fatigue, concentration deficit disorder, decreased feeling of pleasure, pain, trembling and fever.

Cocaine withdrawal symptoms

Discarding cocaine is accompanied by depression and other bad feelings, so the desire for re-taking is very strong. When taking cocaine gets habitual, it’s very difficult to stop, and symptoms of withdrawal include a strong desire for drugs, apathy, depression, paranoia, thoughts about suicide, loss of sexual desire, insomnia. Often times, the body requires higher doses of cocaine to avoid these effects.

Rehab for cocaine addiction in Arizona

Detoxication is the first step in the treatment of addiction disease. Cocaine addiction and abuse is a complex problem whose treatment implies psycho-biological, social and pharmacological approaches. In order to solve the problem, it is necessary to change the lifestyle. Depression that can occur requires careful monitoring and treatment. There are many forms of treatment, including groups for self-help and self-help special telephone lines, as well as hospital treatment.

If you want to get more information on treatment and schedule your first term, please feel free to contact us here or speak with our admissions staff at 888.549.4037.