Cocaine is a stimulant hailing from the jungles of South America where it is extracted from the coca plant. Cocaine is an illegal drug that is smuggled into Canada and The United States by way of Mexico and The Caribbean. This drug typically appears as a fine, white powder, and is ingested by snorting. As with all other street drugs, the risks associated with cocaine are heightened by virtue of the fact that there is nothing like the FDA to monitor quality and set standards. The user is purely at the mercy of the drug dealer, and they will often ingest a substance that is not the one they sought or they will purchase a heavily cut product – often mixed with cornstarch, flour, and other stimulants. This in turn complicates the process of gauging just what an appropriate amount for a user is as the purity will vary greatly from one dealer or batch to the next. The end result is that the user runs the risk of overdosing or harming themselves through an innocent miscalculation.
The most common method by which this drug is ingested is snorting, but users will often turn to is smoking the cocaine to create crystal rocks. This particular iteration of cocaine is called “crack” or “crack cocaine”. Others will combine cocaine with heroin in what is termed a “speed ball”.
The short term effects of cocaine use are nausea, elevated energy levels, and paranoia among others. In the long term a user may suffer from bowel decay, chronic nosebleeds from snorting, and psychosis.
Because this drug is such a powerful stimulant users will have run the risk of damaging their heart and blood vessels, and with a large enough dose and enough wear and tear this can lead to an overdose secenario.