Cocaine Use During Pregnancy Speech Outline.

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Cocaine is a drug extracted from the leaves of the coca plant. It is a potent brain stimulant and one of the most powerful addictive drugs. Once having tried the cocaine, an individual cannot predict or control the extent to which he or she will continue to use the drug.

What are the effects of Cocaine?.

Cocaine can produce a surge in energy, a feeling of intense pleasure, and increased confidence. The effects of powder cocaine last 20 minutes, while the effects of crack last about 12 minutes. Heavy use of cocaine may produce hallucinations, paranoia, aggression, insomnia, and depression.

How does cocaine hurt an unborn baby?.

Cocaine is the most dangerous drug to use when pregnant. It can affect the mother and unborn child in many different ways. In the early stage of pregnancy the use of cocaine can cause a miscarriage. When cocaine is used during the later stage of pregnancy it can cause premature labor. It also may cause an unborn baby to die or to have a stroke, which can result in irreversible brain damage.

Studies show that women who use cocaine during pregnancy are at least twice as likely as other women to have a premature baby. Cocaine cuts the flow of nutrients and oxygen to the baby. When the baby is born it is much smaller then it would be otherwise. Cocaine-exposed babies also tended to have smaller heads, which may indicate a smaller brain.

Cocaine use also can cause the placenta to pull away from the wall of the uterus before labor begins. The placenta abruption can lead to extensive bleeding and can be fatal for both the mother and her baby. The drug also may increase other complication of labor and delivery. .



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