Although you may have heard it called coke, dust, toot, line, nose candy, snow, sneeze, powder, girl, white pony, flake, C, the lady, Cain, neuro-Cain, rock, or crack, it’s all cocaine: a powerfully addictive pain blocker extracted from the leaves of Erythroxylon coca, a plant that comes from the Andean highlands in South America. Cocaine is a strong stimulate that affects the body’s central nervous system. It’s a white crystalline powder that is often mixed with sugar, cornstarch, vitamins and/or flour. Crack cocaine looks like a small rock, chunk or chip and it is sometimes off-white or pink in color.
Cocaine can be injected (released directly into the bloodstream), smoked (inhaled as vapor or smoke into the lungs, where it rapidly enters the bloodstream), or snorted (inhaled through the nose enter the bloodstream through nasal tissues). It is the second most commonly used illicit drug in the U.S. Nearly one percent of Americans, or 2.1 million people, are currently using cocaine. Users can be from all economic status, all ages and all genders.
Cocaine is highly addictive, leaving users with an overwhelming craving for the drug. The addiction to crack develops quickly, sometimes after just a few times of smoking it. Those addicted to cocaine or crack can find help in behavioral treatment including both residential and outpatient approaches.