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Cocaine Dependency Essay

849 words - 4 pages

Mental Health and IllnessTopic-Cocaine DependencyTeacher-Ms. ThurstonStudent-Vidushi SinghDated:-April 6, 2004Definition Cocaine is a powerfully addictive stimulant that directly affects the brain. Pure cocaine was first extracted from the Erythroxylon coca bush's leaves (found in Peru and Bolivia) in the mid 1800s. In the early 1900s it became the chief stimulant drug used in tonics/elixirs to treat many illnesses. It rapidly became popular as an ingredient in throat lozenges, tonics, etc. and other products (e.g. Coca Cola, from which it was later eliminated). However, the public soon became apprehensive about cocaine because of the instances of addiction, psychotic behavior, ...view middle of the document...

The duration of short-term euphoric effects- hyperstimulation, mental clarity and reduced fatigue- depend on the administration method. The faster the cocaine absorption, the more shorter and more intense the high. A snorting high lasts 15-30 minutes, while the smoking high lasts 5-10 minutes. Increased use can reduce the period of stimulation.Short-term effects of Cocaine Abuse Effects appear almost immediately after a dose and disappear within a few minutes or hours. Taken in small amounts (up to 100 mg), cocaine makes the user feel euphoric, energetic, talkative and mentally alert, especially to the sensations of sight, sound and touch. It can also temporarily decrease the need for food and sleep. Some find that it helps them perform simple physical and intellectual tasks quicker, while others experience the opposite effect.Some short-term effects include: Fast heartbeat & breathing; high blood pressure & body temperature Blurred vision, chest pain, nausea, fever, muscle spasms, convulsions & death from convulsions, heart/brain failure; erratic or violent behaviorSome long-term effects of cocaine abuse are: Restlessness, irritability, mood swings, paranoia, insomnia, weight loss Emotional problems & isolation from family & friends Psychosis, anxiety disorders, delusions, dependence & depression Damage & holes on the inside of the nose & inflamed nasal passages Increased risk of hepatitis & HIV, severe respiratory infectionsWarning signs...

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