Cocaine is one of the most commonly used drugs, but that doesn’t make it any less dangerous. It can cause emotional, personal, and financial issues that significantly reduce the quality of life. It can even be deadly.
If you fear that you or a loved one may be abusing cocaine, it’s essential to address the issue as soon as possible. Early treatment can make a recovery easier, and it can keep dependency issues from getting worse. Here are some symptoms of cocaine abuse that will let you know what you should be looking out for.
What is Cocaine?
Cocaine is a stimulant drug sourced from cocoa leaves. It is made by isolating cocaine hydrochloride from the plant. It was used in the early 1900s in tonics and elixirs to block feelings of pain. However, it was soon found that it was highly addictive and dangerous when used regularly.
Today, cocaine is classified as a Schedule II drug. This means that it can still be used for medical purposes, but it is mostly illegal due to its high risk to be abused. When sold on the streets, cocaine is often mixed with flour, talcum powder, baking soda, or amphetamines, making it even more dangerous.
Cocaine can be consumed in two different forms. Water soluble hydrochloride salt comes in a powder form that can be snorted and injected. It can also be ‘freebased,’ which involves combining it with ammonia and sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) and water and heating it to create a smokable substance.
What are the Symptoms of Cocaine Abuse?
Cocaine abuse symptoms include the following:
- Excessive energy, jitteriness, and restlessness
- Excessive talkativeness
- Increased sexual appetite
- Sexual dysfunction in men
- Lack of sleep
- Weight loss
- Mood swings
- Engaging in dangerous behavior
- Engaging in dishonest behavior
- Financial difficulties
- Troubled relationships
- Change in social circles
- Runny nose
- Loss of smell
- Exaggerated ego
- Dilated pupils
- Difficulty swallowing
If cocaine is taken long-term or if excessive doses are consumed, it could lead to:
- A constriction of blood vessels causing heart and brain issues
- Nasal issues including a deviated septum
How Addictive is Cocaine?
Cocaine is a highly addictive drug. Like many drugs, it stimulates the brain’s rewards center, increasing serotonin and dopamine levels. Once the drug wears off, people want to feel that euphoria again, increasing their chances of going back to using.
If you continue using cocaine, you will begin building a tolerance to the drug, needing more of it to get the same results.
Eventually, your body will become so used to having the drug in its system, that it will be unable to function without it. It will need the drug just to feel normal. When the drug is not present, the body will exhibit withdrawal symptoms.
The user knows the only way to get rid of these withdrawal symptoms long-term is to do more of the drug. This keeps them in the vicious cycle of addiction.
It’s difficult to say how quickly it will take for a person to become addicted to cocaine. This will vary according to biological characteristics, how much of the drug the person does, and the type of cocaine the person is using. For example, crack cocaine is more addictive than other types of cocaine.
Is There Outpatient Treatment for Cocaine?
If you are noticing cocaine use symptoms in yourself or a loved one, it’s essential to get help as soon as possible. Getting help early on will make a recovery easier and minimize the drug’s health risks.
Many people are reluctant to get help because they know it will take them away from their jobs and family. Luckily, outpatient treatment for cocaine addiction is available.
If you are looking for the best facility offering South Florida outpatient treatment for cocaine addiction, Principles Recovery is highly recommended.
Principles Recovery is a family-owned recovery center in South Florida. We offer comprehensive rehab care, including detox, partial hospitalization, outpatient therapy, and aftercare. We pride ourselves on treating our clients like part of our family.
Cocaine is a dangerous drug. If you see signs of cocaine use, do not hesitate to contact Principles today. We will get you started on a path to a higher quality of life.