Cocaine is a powerfully addictive substance. Once having tried cocaine, the person cannot predict or control the extent to which he or she will continue to use the drug.
Whether cocaine is smoked, snorted or injected, there is great risk of becoming addicted to the substance. It appears that compulsive cocaine use may develop even more quickly if the substance is smoked. Smoking allows for extremely high doses of cocaine to reach the brain very quickly.
"Crack" is the street name given to cocaine that has been processed from cocaine hydrochloride to a free base for smoking. The term "crack" refers to the crackling sound heard when the mixture is smoked (heated).
The person who injects cocaine is at risk for transmitting or acquiring HIV infection/AIDS if needles are shared.
The combination of cocaine and alcohol consumption, creates a third substance called cocaethylene, which increases the risk of sudden death.
Research by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, reports that 38.3 percent of all treatment admissions in the United States were for cocaine. The individuals seeking treatment for their addiction, cited cocaine as the primary drug of choice that has created the most difficulties in their life.