The extremely addictive stimulant drug known as cocaine is derived from the leaves of the coca plant, native to South America. Cocaine can be used for valid medical reasons such as local anaesthetic in some surgeries, however, as a street drug, it comes in the form of a fine white powder that is often mixed with other substances. Often street dealers will mix cocaine with the likes of talcum powder or flour to maximise profits, but this can often come with dire consequences for the abuser.
How Is Cocaine Used?
The most popular and commonly used methods are to snort the cocaine powder through the nose or to rub it into the gums. Many use these methods as the effects will last longer than if they were to smoke it. Nevertheless, the effects of cocaine only last for around twenty to thirty minutes, even when snorting it.
Another method widely used for cocaine delivery into the body is to smoke the substance, which has been made into a rock crystal, this is known as freebase cocaine. The user heats the crystal to produce a vapour, which is then inhaled. The effects are usually immediate; however, it is short-lived, commonly only lasting for around ten minutes.
Cocaine and Fame
While there are obvious benefits to being famous, there are also some disadvantages as well. Celebrities are only human and can experience incredible amounts of pressure, usually under the watchful eye of the public. If a celebrity is struggling with a drug addiction of any kind, they are automatically labelled as a â€˜bad personâ€™, even if they are trying to seek help. One celebrity who knows this all too well is former Keane singer Tom Chaplin, who suffered from a cocaine addiction for many years.
Tom would abuse cocaine regularly, but as his addiction spiralled out of control, it not only prompted the break-up of his band but it also almost killed him also. After the band announced their separation in 2013, Tom thought he had overcome the worst of his addiction. Nevertheless, the star has since admitted that his cocaine addiction started to become a major problem again. He said, â€œI remember going on mad binges, four, five days, pacing these rooms, peering out the window, paranoid, exhausted, and taking all sorts of other things to take the edge offâ€¦ The rollercoasters Iâ€™ve put myself through physicallyâ€¦ Iâ€™m sure I would have killed myself if Iâ€™d done it much longer.â€
He then went on to say that, eventually, something finally clicked. He woke up the morning after his last binge and vowed to change. He needed to get his life back on track, to be a good husband and father. And thatâ€™s exactly what he did.
The Dangers of Cocaine
There is a whole host of side effects, both short- and long-term, that can be experienced as a result of cocaine abuse. Some of the short-term effects include:
- intense drug cravings
- panic and psychosis
- erratic and sometimes violent behaviour.
These effects can be very disturbing to the individual. In many cases, though, the abuser will continually take the drug so that he or she does not have to suffer these side effects.
Continued cocaine abuse can also have long-term consequences for the individual, which can be extremely damaging to their overall health. Some examples include:
- severe depression
- permanent damage to the blood vessels of heart and brain
- malnutrition and weight loss
- sexual problems.
Cocaine is a very harmful drug that can have serious consequences to the abuserâ€™s health. If you think you could be suffering from a cocaine addiction, get in touch with Recovery Lighthouse today. We can offer a listening ear, advice, or discuss treatment options with you.
Source: Tom Chaplin from Keane on how drug addiction nearly killed him â€“ and his solo comeback (inews)