Cocaine Addiction

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Cocaine is presently the most abused major stimulant in North America. A common myth is that cocaine is not addictive because it lacks the physical withdrawal symptoms seen in alcohol or heroin addiction. Cocaine has powerful psychological addictive properties. As more than one user has reflected, "If it is not addictive, then why can't I stop?" The trend in drug abuse in the Canada is presently multiple or poly drug abuse, and cocaine is no exception. Cocaine is often used with alcohol, sedatives such as Valium, Ativan, or heroin, as an upper/downer combination. The other drug is also used to moderate the side effects of the primary addiction. A common poly drug abuse problem, seen especially in adolescents, is cocaine, alcohol, and marijuana.

Drug abuse, chemical dependency, and addictive behavior spare no one and are spread throughout society. They do not respect age, profession, race, religion, or physical attributes.

History:

Cocaine is a naturally occurring alkaloid usually extracted from the leaves of the coca shrub, which was originally found in the Andes Mountains of Peru and Bolivia. With its appreciation as a lucrative cash crop, it is now cultivated in Colombia, Argentina, Brazil, Mexico, the West Indies, Ecuador, and Java. Coca leaves were mixed with lime and chewed by the Peruvian Indians as early as the sixth century to allay the effects of cold, hunger, and fatigue. It is still used as such as a gift from the Sun God.

Coca was later introduced to Europe, where the alkaloid cocaine was isolated. Its medicinal effects on depression, alcohol and morphine addiction, fatigue, and as a local anesthetic were discovered. However, these discoveries were not without cost to those who experimented with it. The result was addiction and dependency on the drug.

Freebasing involves the conversion of cocaine hydrochloride into cocaine sulfate that is "free" of the additives and nearly 100% pure. It is not water soluble and has a low melting point, so it can be smoked. The freebaser runs the risk of being burned by the conversion process because a highly volatile solvent, such as ether, is being used.

 Crack is extracted from coke using baking soda and heat-a relatively safe method compared with the ether technique. The waxy base becomes rocks of cocaine, ready to be sold in vials. This rock cocaine is also easy to smoke, the most common form of use in the streets. Because the freebase is resistant to destruction by heat, it can be smoked either in cigarettes, including marijuana cigarettes, or in "coke pipes." Smoking the freebase produces a more powerful effect more rapidly, but it is also more dangerous because the safe dose can easily be exceeded. A user describes the comparison: "Snorting coke is like driving 50 miles per hour. Smoking crack is like driving 150 miles per hour without brakes!"

Why cocaine becomes addictive:

Researchers supported by the National Institute on Drug Abuse have identified a process in the brain that may help explain addiction to cocaine and other drugs of abuse. Their research indicates that repeated exposure to cocaine causes a change in genes that leads to altered levels of a specific brain protein. This protein regulates the action of a normally occurring brain chemical called dopamine. It is a chemical messenger in the brain associated with the cocaine's pleasurable "rush"-the mechanism of addiction.

Research with cocaine has shown that all laboratory animals can become compulsive cocaine users. Animals will work more persistently at pressing a bar for cocaine than for any drug, including opiates. An addicted monkey pressed the bar 12,800 times until it got a single dose of cocaine. If the animal survives, it will return to the task of obtaining more cocaine.

Treatment for cocaine in Canada comes in many different forms. There are good centres for cocaine treatment in Canada, and not so good places for treatment. It is important to choose a facility for cocaine treatment in Canada that suits the individual with drug abuse problem. Every individual is different, and a good program for cocaine treatment in Canada will be tailored to the individual.

What to expect at treatment:

Cocaine users in cocaine treatment in Canada are luckier than individuals who are addicted to sedatives, barbiturates, and opioids. Cocaine is a water-soluble substance; cocaine is not stored in the body’s cells. Detoxing from cocaine in Canada is mostly a mental and a psychological process, not a physical one.

Good programs for cocaine treatment in Canada will recognize cocaine addiction for the complex medical illness that it is. Cocaine treatment in Canada can be very successful, and the individual can go on to live a happy, fulfilling life.

Different kinds of treatment:

Because cocaine is so powerful and so addictive, inpatient cocaine treatment in Canada is often recommended by professionals as the best cocaine treatment in Canada because it provides addicts with a structured environment and immerses the individual in a total recovery environment. HeartQuest works in privileged  partnership with many Treatment Centres in Canada, and can facilitate a very timely admittance

Other kinds of cocaine treatment in Canada and individual can access for cocaine addiction are outpatient treatment programs or community self-help groups.

If you or someone you love needs help with cocaine addiction, cocaine treatment in Canada call us at 604.818.1771 or click here.