What is Cocaine?
Whether it’s called blow, snow, flake or coke, the fine white powder that produces an energetic high is the powerful stimulant cocaine. Cocaine use is widespread, and deadly.
Cocaine is generally sold in two forms on the street, either as hydrochloride salt and freebase. The former is the type that users snort up their nose while the freebase form is smoked and is more commonly known by its slang name “crack.”
Cocaine is a highly addictive substance. The user needs more and more with each use to obtain the same high he or she enjoyed earlier. That’s because the nervous system quickly adapts to the massive amounts of biochemicals the drug produces while the user can quickly become hooked on the extremely joyful and energetic feeling.
Symptoms and Warning Signs of Cocaine Abuse
Someone who is high on cocaine typically experiences that high for about 15 to 30 minutes. Telltale signs of a cocaine high include dilated pupils, a racing heart rate and intense stimulation.
The user may exhibit signs of elation, fast-paced and endless chattering and a massive burst of energy. By contrast, the user could alternatively end up restless, irritable or full of anxiety. Blood pressure and body temperature also rise during a high.
Because the high does not last all that long, the user may hide out to refuel in a secluded location. When the high does start to wear off, the person can become fatigued, depressed and zapped of energy and mental clarity.
Noticeable Signs of Cocaine Use & Abuse
Signs of cocaine use around the home can include streaks or fine white powder residue on mirrors, glass or CD cases. Rolled-up dollar bills, cut straws, and miniscule spoons are paraphernalia used to snort the drug. Cocaine is usually transported in small baggies with zipper closures.
Once someone becomes hooked in coke, he or she may increase the amount and frequency of the doses, resulting in more anxiety and irritability and less euphoria. Paranoia can set in, with the most severe cases potentially resulting in a highly paranoid state where the user begins to act irrationally due to his or her loss of touch with reality.
Cocaine use can easily transform into cocaine abuse when the use becomes a regular habit. Signs of abuse show up physically and mentally, often with a complete change in personality. Grades and motivation can drop, as can attention to grooming and appearance.
Physical Signs of Cocaine Dependence
Cocaine abuse can skew sleeping habits and eating habits, mainly by killing off the appetite. It may lead to missed appointments, playing hooky from school, and an angry attitude toward family members and friends. Abusers may stop engaging in activities they used to enjoy and spend increasing amounts of time by themselves. Physical signs of abuse can include bloodshot eyes and constant sniffling or a runny nose. Extreme mood swings and violence can round out the symptoms.
Extended use of cocaine can eventually lead to an additional set of physical and mental issues. These include respiratory and lung disorders, such as asthma and fluid in the lungs. The nasal passages can disintegrate and the user can begin to lose his or her sense of smell. Anxiety disorders, frequent delusions, headaches and nausea can also accompany long term cocaine abuse.
A cocaine overdose is also a possibility, where the user ingests more of the stimulant than the body can handle. An overdose can send the nervous system into overdrive, resulting in extreme hyperactivity, confusion and sweating. The most severe overdoses can result in seizures, stroke or death
Contact The Delray Recovery Center Today
If you have seen the signs and suspect your loved one struggling with cocaine addiction, please contact us immediately. You are not alone in this fight. We understand what you are going through and we are here to help.