What Is Cocaine Powder?
Cocaine powder is a powerfully addictive stimulant drug made from the leaves of the coca plant native to South America. Although health care providers can use it for valid medical purposes, such as local anesthesia for some surgeries, recreational cocaine use is illegal. As a street drug, cocaine looks like a fine, white, crystal powder.
Cocaine powder is commonly snorted, inhaled as smoke, or dissolved and injected into a vein. Mental effects may include loss of contact with reality, an intense feeling of happiness, or agitation.
Physical symptoms may include a fast heart rate, sweating, and large pupils. High doses can result in very hypertension or body temperature.
Street Cocaine is often mixed with things like cornstarch, talcum powder, or flour to increase profits. They may also mix it with other drugs such as the stimulant amphetamine, or synthetic opioids, including fentanyl.
Adding synthetic opioids to cocaine is especially risky when people using cocaine don’t realize it contains this dangerous additive.
What are cocaine street names and legal status?
cocaine powder is a Schedule II drug, which means that it has a high potential for abuse but can be administered by a doctor for legitimate medical uses, such as local anesthesia for some eye, ear, and throat surgeries.
As a street drug, cocaine appears as a fine, white, crystalline powder and is also commonly known on the streets as Coke, C, Snow, Powder, or Blow, crack, nose candy, snow-white, white girl, coca, etc.
How Is Cocaine Used?
Cocaine users administer cocaine orally, intranasally, intravenously, or by inhalation. When people snort the drug, they inhale cocaine powder through the nostrils, where it is absorbed into the bloodstream through the nasal tissues.
Cocaine users also may rub the drug onto their gums. Also, dissolving cocaine in water and injecting it releases the drug directly into the bloodstream and heightens the intensity of its effects.
Cocaine users in the United States smoke cocaine, they inhale its vapor or smoke into the lungs, where absorption into the bloodstream is almost as rapid as by injection. This fast euphoric effect is one of the reasons that cocaine became very popular in the mid-1980s.
These above methods are the most popular methods by which cocaine users in the United States and the world, in general, administer cocaine drug.
How Does Cocaine Powder Produce its Effects?
Pure cocaine powder affects the brain’s mesolimbic dopamine system, its reward pathway is stimulated by all types of reinforcing stimuli, such as food, sex, and many drugs of abuse, including cocaine.
This pathway originates in a region of the midbrain called the ventral tegmental area and extends to the nucleus accumbens, one of the brain’s key reward areas. Dopamine is released by a neuron into the synapse, where it binds to specialized proteins called dopamine receptors on the neighboring neuron.
By this process, dopamine acts as a chemical messenger, carrying a signal from neuron to neuron. Another specialized protein called a transporter removes dopamine from the synapse to be recycled for further use.
Pure cocaine powder can interfere with this normal communication process. For example, cocaine acts by binding to the dopamine transporter, blocking the removal of dopamine from the synapse.
Dopamine then accumulates in the synapse to produce an amplified signal to the receiving neurons. This is what causes the euphoria commonly know as a “cocaine high”
What Are The Side Effects Of Cocaine Use?
Cocaine’s effects appear almost immediately after a single dose and disappear within a few minutes to an hour. Small amounts of cocaine usually make cocaine users feel euphoric, energetic, talkative, mentally alert, and hypersensitive to sight, sound, and touch. Cocaine can also temporarily decrease the need for food and sleep.
“Cocaine’s high” depends greatly on how it was administered. The faster the drug is absorbed, the more intense the resulting high, but also the shorter its duration. Snorting cocaine produces a relatively slow onset of the high, but it may last from 15 to 30 minutes.
Short-term effects of cocaine use include constricted blood vessels, dilated pupils, and increased body temperature, heart rate, and blood pressure, Large amounts of cocaine may intensify the user’s high but can also lead to strange, erratic, and violent behavior. Some cocaine users report feelings of restlessness, irritability, anxiety, panic, and paranoia.
Regular cocaine use may result in tolerance, more frequent use of cocaine, or both are needed to produce the same level of pleasure and relief from withdrawal experienced initially. Tolerance to cocaine reward and sensitization to cocaine toxicity can increase the risk of overdose or even addiction in a regular cocaine user.
Cocaine users take cocaine in binges, in which cocaine is used repeatedly and at increasingly higher doses. This can lead to increased irritability, restlessness, panic attacks, paranoia, and even a full-blown psychosis, in which the individual loses touch with reality and experiences auditory hallucinations.
Research on animals suggests that binging on cocaine during adolescence enhances sensitivity to the rewarding effects of cocaine powder and MDMA pills. Thus, binge use of cocaine during adolescence may further increase vulnerability to continued use of the drug among some people.
Important Information About Cocaine, HIV, And Hepatitis
Studies have proven that cocaine use speeds up HIV infection. According to research, cocaine impairs immune cell function and promotes the reproduction of the HIV virus.
Research also suggests that people who use cocaine powder and are infected with HIV may be more susceptible to contracting other viruses, such as hepatitis C, a virus that affects the liver.