Cocaine users often discuss their perception that cocaine has a good side. For example, cocaine creates a powerful sense of euphoria and allows users to remain awake for long periods of time, making it a perfect club drug. It boost’s a user’s ego and self-confidence, making the user believe that he is the most powerful person in the room. Cocaine is the most powerful natural central nervous system stimulant and it helps users overcome their shyness and increase their sociability. Cocaine might have had some good qualities when it was used as a medicine or for topical anesthetic purposes. Physicians and addiction counselors have heard perceptions of other purported “good” qualities of cocaine from cocaine abusers for decades, but experience has taught those physicians and counselors that where cocaine use and abuse is the issue, there is no good, just bad and ugly.
Even small amounts of cocaine use can quickly lead to cocaine addiction. The dopamine receptors in a cocaine user’s brain (i.e. those parts of the brain that control emotions and cognitive abilities) undergo physiological and chemical changes that cause increasing cravings for more cocaine at more frequent intervals. An addict who abruptly stops using cocaine will experience withdrawal symptoms, including depression and anxiety, flu-like aches, pains, tremors and chills, and a noted inability to feel or experience pleasure. These symptoms are more psychological than physical, but they are often severe enough to drive a cocaine user back to his regular destructive habit. A cocaine user who feeds his addiction will slowly experience less of the high that he seeks and will only be using cocaine to satisfy his addictive cravings. Thus, the cocaine addict no longer experiences the “good” that he connects to his drug use, and he suffers only the bad and the ugly aspects of cocaine addiction.
Apart from the withdrawal that addicts experience when they stop using cocaine, addicts can suffer other harm to their physical and emotional health from cocaine use. Cocaine can trigger heart attacks and dangerous heart arrhythmias. Cocaine can restrict and weaken blood vessels in a user’s brain, increasing his risk of suffering from strokes and brain bleeds. Cocaine can also cause respiratory, gastrointestinal and kidney problems, and lead to sexual dysfunctions as the cocaine user’s ability to experience pleasure is adversely affected by the drug. combining cocaine and alcohol can be deadly, and more drug-related deaths result from the combined use of alcohol and cocaine than any other drug combination.
Some researchers believe that brain and system damage from cocaine use is permanent. A cocaine user’s brain ages and loses grey matter more rapidly than a non-user’s brain. Some former cocaine users report that they have recovered virtually all of their cognitive brain functions, but those reports are unverified. A cocaine user’s best course of action is to stop using cocaine with the assistance of a qualified treatment program and therapy in order to cease any degradation of his or her brain and body systems beyond the damage that cocaine use may have already caused.
If you are a regular cocaine user and would like more information on the bad and the ugly aspects of your cocaine use, or you are seeking assistance to kick a cocaine habit, please call the staff and counselors at Hired Power at 800-910-9299. Our team include dedicated and caring counselors and therapists who will help you take the initial and the long-term steps to defeat your cocaine abuse problems.