Cocaine isn’t a new drug; in fact, a famous brand of soda was derived from its natural source and it is, indeed, a plant by-product. Centuries of exposure from one society to the next, however, has not prepared modern society for the impact of this drug on our culture.
Cocaine in the Spotlight
Numerous films and TV shows highlighted the effects of dealing and doing drugs, especially cocaine, particularly in the 1980s and early 1990s. Films such as Traffic and Scarface and TV show Miami Vice depicted the ugliness of drug dealing, especially when a deal went wrong.
There was so much bloodshed, violence, and horror in those films. Viewers saw how drugs tore families and lives apart before a drop of blood was even shed. In spite of the gritty reality seen in these shows, consumers continue to try cocaine, believing that smoking, snorting, or injecting it just once won’t cause them to become addicted. So often, they are wrong and with deadly consequences.
Expensive Celebrity Drug
Celebrities such as famous movie stars, athletes, and singers usually swear they have never taken drugs, and often the reverse is true. Their fans discover as much later on in the headlines following a tragic, high-profile drug overdose, an arrest, or when an autobiography hits the shelves.
The public lauds these celebrities for coming clean and trying to prevent others from taking drugs too, but that sort of soul-bearing is a good book-selling technique and great for renewing a flagging career too. The world has lost many great artists to the allure of drugs, but this only seems to glamorize them more in the eyes of adoring fans.
What Happens When You Take Cocaine?
Cocaine works something like a stimulant in the sense that a person will usually become energized after taking it. Multiply the effects of drinking coffee or inhaling nicotine several times, speed-up the crash, and amplify the withdrawal symptoms and you get a glimpse of what it’s like to do drugs.
One’s heart rate speeds up; his reactions are faster; he might experience delusions of grandeur. The last symptom sometimes leads to seemingly insane behaviors like trying to fly or drive a car through a brick wall. That high sensation which only lasts a short time can be the death of a person without the drug getting to his heart.
When the crash is really bad, a person will feel desperate, even suicidal, possibly paranoid, and often mildly depressed. When someone’s moods swing wildly from exuberance to distress, drug use is a possible cause.
Heart of the Matter
Many times, a doctor or a nurse will find himself resuscitating a drug user whose experiment with cocaine has overloaded his heart. Cocaine users, whether they are addicts or first-time consumers, frequently die of heart attack, stroke, or during a seizure. This is the price people pay for experimenting with illegal drugs, but not just the price they pay; every loved one in their lives is left asking “why.”
Treating Cocaine Addiction
If family members are able to intervene in the case of a spouse or child’s cocaine use, it is possible to get treatment before a drug deal goes wrong or lands a person in the Emergency Room. Intervention should involve the help of a professional who will counsel co-dependents as to how they should approach the substance abuser.
This is to ensure the intervention is handled as professionally as possible, to make sure everyone is following the same direction, and for safety. It might not be safe to approach a substance user at certain times so exercise caution.
When intervention is successful, the substance abuser will admit himself into detox followed by a series of rehabilitation sessions. Detox is a painful but short-lived process. It might seem to go on forever because of the physical and emotional pain one experiences plus shaking, vomiting, chills, and headaches. Symptoms subside and the sufferer can eventually start to address the issue of drug addiction in a fulfilling way.
Rehabilitating a Drug Addict
The approach to addiction, whether a patient is reliant on alcohol, meth, or cocaine is to ask “what caused this?” Drug use is always a choice, but what prompted the individual to try cocaine in the first place? Often, peer pressure alone is enough.
Addicts frequently come from good homes where they are taught the dangers of drug use. It is also typical for someone to try drugs as a way to break free of emotional distress, loneliness, or a situation such as bullying or abuse.
Drugs are never a good answer as they cause more problems than they solve, and rehab is a good place to explore those concerns. There are counselors there to work with individuals and to take groups through various programs which help them break free from the lies they tell themselves about being worthless or deserving the abuse they have experienced.
Scientific research is currently underway to develop drugs which will help recovering addicts stay away from cocaine after they finish a rehabilitation program. They will include a vaccination which could cause a person to experience something similar to an allergic reaction when he takes cocaine.