"helped her kick her cocaine habit"

Cocaine is a stimulative drug which is a crystallized substance made from the leaves of the coca plant. It is illegal to grow, possess, sell or use cocaine in most countries around the world due to its highly addictive and damaging properties, however many people still use and are addicted to it.

Powdered cocaine
Public DomainPowdered cocaine - Credit: DEA Drug Enforcement Agency USA
Cocaine is a white powder which is usually snorted through the nose, rubbed onto the gums or sometimes injected. Crack cocaine is a mixture of cocaine and a solution of baking powder and water which is then vaporized and inhaled.

Cocaine stimulates the nervous system and causes the user to feel euphoric, energetic and more powerful than usual. Anxiety, nervousness and depression are however also common and once the ‘high’ fades the user is often left feeling worse than before. The addiction of the high is what causes many people to continue taking the drug. Usage however leads to many medical complications, from nausea, headaches and fevers to high blood pressure, heart attacks, strokes, damage of the nasal cartilage and brain damage.

Once addicted to cocaine it is very hard to kick the habit, often requiring counselling, medical help or a period in rehabilitation.