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While it can be injected, smoked, or snorted, people commonly snort cocaine because this form of it produces a longer-lasting high. But what does cocaine do to your nose if you snort it? Our drug rehab center Gilman is taking a closer look inside the nose of a cocaine user.
Cocaine is a powerful central nervous system (CNS) stimulant that’s derived from coca leaves of Erythroxylon coca, a plant native to South America. Before cocaine’s effects on the nose or any other part of the body were understood, it was an active ingredient in many medications and was even in the early formulas of Coca-Cola. Now, the repercussions of long-term cocaine abuse are much better understood and there’s more research advising against any use of this drug.
There are various ways to use cocaine, one of them being snorting or inhaling it through the nose. Despite the symptoms of cocaine use on the nose, many users prefer this method because it produces an immediate high that may also last longer than if they injected it or smoked it. However, as with any other method of use, snorting cocaine can seriously damage the nose.
To understand how cocaine affects the nose, you have to know the basic parts of the nose. The main parts of the nose are:
Snorting cocaine can damage the mucous membrane linings and inhibit blood flow to the nose. When this lining is affected, it also leaves the person more susceptible to inhaling irritating particles. While the damage to the membrane linings is a direct result of snorting cocaine, decreased blood flow is caused by the effects of cocaine on the brain, specifically on neurotransmitters. These are chemicals that act as messengers in the CNS and include chemicals epinephrine and norepinephrine. Because they help regulate blood flow in the body, cocaine’s effects on their levels can disrupt this process
Cocaine is a highly addictive and dangerous drug that can affect more than just your nose. Banyan Treatment Centers Heartland offers a cocaine detox that helps people addicted to it safely get through the withdrawal phase of recovery. This is an important step in treating addiction that can make the rest of the process smoother.
Experiencing nose bleeds after cocaine use is common because of the direct damage to the membrane lining. However, these short-term effects of cocaine on the nose can lead to long-term problems. The nose absorbs cocaine first through the mucus membrane linings, after which it enters the bloodstream. Any other additional cocaine cutting agents, such as paint thinner or fentanyl, are also absorbed in this process. These chemicals inflame the inner lining of the nose, causing stuffiness and irritation. After that, the drug’s effects cause the blood vessels in the nose to shrivel, which blocks blood flow. As the effects of cocaine wear off, these vessels may burst, which causes nose bleeds. Despite this damage, a user may only be able to quit with cocaine addiction treatment.
Some additional effects of cocaine on the nose include:
The ugly side of addiction goes beyond nosebleeds and saddle nose. This drug can also cause damage to the heart, lungs, liver, kidneys, and more. Addiction is a cruel disease that should be treated by experts. If you have a cocaine addiction or know someone who does, we can help. Call Banyan Heartland now at 888-280-4763 to speak to a team member about our drug and alcohol treatment in Gilman.