Symptoms of Cocaine Addiction
In this article, we’ll dive deep into the symptoms of cocaine addiction. We’ll talk about what cocaine is and what makes it so addictive.
What Is Cocaine?
Cocaine in the Bloodstream
Cocaine rapidly enters the bloodstream and crosses the blood-brain barrier. It then affects or alters the brain’s neurotransmitter levels, particularly dopamine.
Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that is responsible for regulating pleasure and reward.
Do You Struggle With Cocaine Addiction?
Is Cocaine Addictive?
The symptoms of cocaine addiction can develop rapidly. This addiction leads people down a destructive path of dependence and compulsive drug-seeking behavior.
Understanding The Cocaine Addiction Cycle
How Do I Recognize Tolerance and Dependence on Cocaine?
Over time, the pleasurable effects of cocaine diminish. Conversely, the negative symptoms of cocaine addiction become more pronounced.
This introduces the need for higher doses to temporarily alleviate these symptoms. Cocaine is also taken to help affected people maintain a sense of normalcy.
Recognizing the Symptoms Of Cocaine Addiction
There are many cocaine addiction symptoms to be cognizant of. They encompass a range of physical, behavioral, and psychological indicators. Physical symptoms may be the most obvious. Psychological and behavioral symptoms of cocaine addiction can significantly impact an individual.
Why Is It Important to Recognize the Symptoms of Cocaine Addiction?
Common Physical Symptoms Of Cocaine Addiction
Physical symptoms of cocaine use or addiction are indicative of the toll cocaine takes on physical health. Common physical symptoms of cocaine addiction include the following:
Elevated Heart Rate and Blood Pressure
Cocaine often suppresses appetite, leading to significant weight loss.
People addicted to cocaine may experience a noticeable decline in body weight as a result from decreased food intake and malnutrition.
Snorting cocaine can cause nasal congestion and a chronic runny nose. It can also cause frequent nosebleeds.
Prolonged cocaine use may damage the nasal septum, leading to perforation or other structural problems in the nose.
Cocaine is known for its stimulant properties. It provides users with a surge of energy.
People addicted to cocaine may exhibit heightened activity levels. They may also exhibit restlessness and an overall increase in physical energy.
Cocaine’s stimulating effects can interfere with sleep patterns, leading to insomnia. Users may find it difficult to fall asleep or experience disrupted sleep.
This contributes to sleep deprivation and its associated symptoms.
More Common Physical Symptoms of Cocaine Use
Tremors and Muscle Twitches
Cocaine can induce muscle tremors and twitching. These physical symptoms may be noticeable in the hands, fingers, or other parts of the body.
They are believed to be a result of the drug’s stimulant effects on the nervous system.
Increased Body Temperature
Changes in Sexual Function
Cocaine addiction can affect sexual function. Both men and women may experience a decrease in libido (sexual desire).
They may also encounter difficulties achieving or maintaining an erection or orgasm.
Chronic cocaine use can have detrimental effects on oral health. Users may experience tooth decay, gum disease, and even tooth loss.
This occurs due to cocaine’s vasoconstrictive effects and its impact on oral hygiene.
Increased Susceptibility to Infections
Cocaine can weaken the immune system. This makes individuals more susceptible to infections.
Respiratory symptoms of cocaine use, like pneumonia, are particularly common among cocaine users.
Psychological Symptoms Of Cocaine Addiction
Cocaine use can cause people to experience abrupt and extreme shifts in emotions.
They may exhibit euphoria and increased confidence during the drug’s effects, followed by irritability, anxiety, or depression as the drug wears off.
Anxiety and Paranoia
Cocaine addiction is often accompanied by heightened anxiety and paranoia.
Individuals may experience intense feelings of fear, restlessness, or suspicion, leading to social withdrawal and isolation.
Irritability and Aggression
Individuals with cocaine addiction may display heightened irritability, as well as display a propensity for aggression.
Small irritations or frustrations can trigger angry outbursts or aggressive behavior that do not warrant such reactions.
Impaired Judgment and Decision-Making
Cocaine use causes poor judgment and decision-making abilities. As such, people may make impulsive and risky choices.
They’ll also tend to disregard the potential negative consequences of their actions.
Individuals often experience psychological distress due to the presence of co-occurring disorders like depression.
These co-occurring mental health issues can exacerbate the challenges of overcoming addiction.
Hallucinations and Psychosis
In severe cases, cocaine addiction can induce hallucinations and psychotic symptoms.
Individuals may experience sensory disturbances, delusions, or a loss of touch with reality, requiring immediate professional intervention.
Behavioral Symptoms of Cocaine Addiction
With psychological cocaine addiction symptoms come behavioral symptoms. Here are common behavioral symptoms of cocaine addiction:
Compulsive Drug-seeking Behavior
Individuals with symptoms of cocaine addiction may exhibit compulsive behaviors usually centered around obtaining and using the drug.
They may prioritize cocaine over other responsibilities and activities.
Loss of Control
Escalating Dose and Frequency
Because of tolerance, people increase their dose and frequency of cocaine use.
This pattern of escalating drug use can further worsen addiction. It also increases the risk of physical and psychological harm.
Secrecy and Deception
Cocaine addiction can lead to secretive behavior. People will usually attempt to hide their drug use from loved ones or authorities.
This will make it challenging for others to recognize the extent of their drug-related activities.
People with addiction may isolate themselves from family and social activities, withdrawing from relationships and social engagements, preferring the company of others also experiencing substance use disorder, or spending time alone to engage in drug-related behaviors.
Neglect of Responsibilities
Early Cocaine Addiction Vs. Full-blown Cocaine Addiction
Cocaine addiction symptoms can vary depending on the stage of addiction. In the early stages of cocaine addiction, individuals may exhibit certain initial signs and symptoms.
These symptoms can intensify as the addiction progresses into a full-blown state.
Early Symptoms Of Cocaine Addiction
- Increased energy and talkativeness
- Dilated pupils
- Elevated heart rate and blood pressure
- Appetite suppression and weight loss
- Nasal issues
- Financial difficulties
- Erratic behavior and secrecy
- Isolation from family and friends
- Neglect of responsibilities
More Severe Symptoms of Cocaine Addiction
As the individual progresses in their drug use, their cocaine addiction symptoms may escalate and include following:
- Intense cravings and compulsive drug-seeking behavior
- Loss of control
- Escalating dose and frequency
- Social isolation and strained relationships
- Mood swings, irritability, and aggression
- Impaired judgment and decision-making
- Psychological distress
- Hallucinations and psychosis
It is important to note that the symptoms can vary from person to person. Also, the progression of addiction can be different for each individual.
Common Cocaine Withdrawal Symptoms
As mentioned earlier, cocaine addiction symptoms include manifestations of withdrawal symptoms.
You should know that these withdrawal symptoms are numerous, and they range in severity. Some of these symptoms are even potentially life-threatening.
Indications of Withdrawal
- Intense cravings
- Fatigue and lethargy
- Anxiety and restlessness
- Increased appetite
- Disturbed sleep
- Poor concentration and cognitive difficulties
- Irritability and mood swings
- Restless, unpleasant sensations
- Increased sensitivity to stress
As the body adjusts to life without the drug, such withdrawal symptoms of cocaine addiction are commonplace.
It is up to the individual to decide to continue with the recovery process in order to be free of cocaine addiction.
Find Help For Cocaine Addiction At Rockland Recovery
Are you currently struggling with cocaine addiction? If you are, Rockland Recovery is here to help.
At Rockland Recovery, our cocaine rehab facility provides the help and support you’ll need to stay motivated throughout the recovery process.
What We Offer
At Rockland Recovery, we understand how challenging cocaine addiction can be.
As such, we have a plethora of premium-quality services designed to ensure you have access to the best treatment experience possible.
- Sober living facilities
- Family therapy
- 12-Step recovery program
- Living skills support
- Medication-assisted treatment
- Highly skilled and experienced treatment teams
- Referrals to school, volunteer work, and community resources
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