Cocaine: A Deadly Road to Personal Ruin
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What is cocaine?

“With coke, you are like a moth drawn to a light. It attracts you more and more and you can’t stop it. It’s not physical. It’s in your head. The more you have it, the more you take it. I have at times injected it in myself with it every ten minutes. I borrowed money from the bank to buy it. One day, I became unemployed. It was worse. I used to shoot up all the time. This thing made me insane. I knew it, but I continued. I became a total failure.”

Cocaine is an extract from coca leaves. It was first produced in approximately 1855 and used as a painkiller.

Cocaine comes in two forms: a hydrochloride salt that is white, crystalline powder and “freebase,” a more concentrated and potent compound that has been separated from its hydrochloride base so that it can be smoked. “Crack” is a solid form of freebase cocaine, so named because it makes a “cracking” or “popping” sound when heated.

There are dozens and dozens of street terms for cocaine and crack, of which the following are those most commonly in use today.

Drug name: Cocaine, Cocaine Hydrochloride Crack, Freebase Cocaine
Street terms most commonly in use: aunt nora, bernice, bernie, blow, cocaine, coke, C, flake, mojo, nose candy, paradise white, powder, snow, etc. ball, base, basing, crack, freebase, hardrock, ice cube, paste, rock, rock star, etc.
Source: A crystalline alkaloid extracted from dried coca leaves. Crack and freebase are forms of cocaine which have been not been neutralized by an acid to make the hydrochloride salt. Crack is between 80 and 100% pure, far stronger and more potent than regular cocaine.
Form: White crystalline powder, usually diluted with inert substances such as cornstarch, talcum powder and/or sugar or other drugs such as procaine (a chemically-related local anesthetic) or amphetamines. Crack: Solid blocks or crystals varying in color from yellow, to pale rose to white.
Freebase: fine white powder, like powdered suger.
Consumption: Most often sniffed. Powder is absorbed into the bloodstream through the nasal tissues.
Can also be rubbed onto other mucous tissues such as the gums or ingested. Is sometimes injected, often in combination with heroin, which is know as a “speedball.” The drug is absorbed much more rapidly, but there is high risk of overdose. Cocaine can also be inhaled as smoke or vapor, being absorbed into the bloodstream as rapidly as through injection.
Smoked in a glass pipe. Crack is an extremely potent form of cocaine which reaches the brain very rapidly. A single inhalation produces a degree of intoxication lasting ten to fifteen minutes.

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