Cocaine is a drug belonging to the group of psychoactive substances, that is, it produces a directly stimulating effect to the central nervous system, principally to the brain. Cocaine tolerance develops quickly, which means that it is highly addictive.
It is a drug that is particularly harmful to health, both physical and mental, even at a low dose. Its harmful effects become worse the longer it is consumed and the greater the amount is used, with the consequences extending well beyond those at a personal level, affecting partners, family and friends.
The intense craving and depression can last over a period of months after having given up a high level of consumption (especially if use was daily) over a prolonged period of time. In some people the signs of withdrawal can also be associated with suicidal thoughts.
During abstinence, there may be intense and powerful desires to take cocaine. However, the feeling of well being associated with the continued use becomes less and less pleasant. This can result in an experience of dread and paranoia rather than joy (euphoria). Despite this, these cravings can still continue to be strong.