There are many different substances that are regularly abused today, and some such destructive habits tend to be more difficult to overcome than others. As in-depth information found online here will make clear, cocaine can be one of the most troublesome substances of all for those who become addicted to it. Fortunately, there is also plenty of effective help available to those who have succumbed to the habitual abuse of this common drug.
A Long, Problematic History of Usage and Abuse
For centuries, people throughout South America have chewed the leaves of the indigenous coca plant in order to enjoy a relatively mild stimulating, energizing effect. European settlers and scientists became interested in the plant for the same reasons starting around the seventeenth century, and efforts to isolate and purify the active ingredient soon followed.
Once so concentrated by orders of magnitude, the alkaloid cocaine was revealed to be quite a bit more problematic than had been assumed. While natives of South America had been able to incorporate low, leaf-derived doses into their everyday lives without much trouble, the addictive power of the purified form of cocaine soon became apparent.
Despite that fact, cocaine found its way into a variety of mass market nostrums and other preparations. At one point, even a popular soft drink contained measurable amounts of the stimulant and was widely considered safe to drink.
It was not until relatively late in the twentieth century, however, that abuse of relatively pure cocaine rose to the level of becoming a public health epidemic. With production levels skyrocketing and sophisticated, determined smuggling ensuring a globally available supply for users, abuse became widespread.
Better Ways of Addressing a Persistent Problem
Unfortunately, early, systematic efforts to help cocaine abusers overcome their addictive habits often proved ineffective. One longstanding challenge involved the fact that the mechanism by which cocaine fosters addiction was simply not well understood.
Since then, however, determined, diligent research into the matter has identified and elaborated upon all the relevant biochemical reactions and biological processes. As a result, treatment for cocaine-based substance abuse today can draw upon plenty of well established scientific conclusions to make recovery more likely. While cocaine abuse is still a major issue, those who struggle with it can now count on plenty of effective help.