5 Signs Of Cocaine Abuse

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Cocaine is an addictive stimulant drug with a high abuse potential. People who abuse cocaine relay some common signs that can point to a substance use disorder (SUD).

Signs Of Cocaine Abuse

Cocaine is a powerful and addictive stimulant that profoundly affects the brain and body.

Abuse of cocaine can lead to a number of serious and potentially life-threatening health consequences.

This stimulant drug affects the brain by causing a massive release of the neurotransmitter dopamine.

This results in the “high” that cocaine users feel, which is characterized by feelings of euphoria, increased energy, and alertness.

The effects of cocaine abuse can also lead to feelings of paranoia, anxiety, and aggression.

Effects such as these may result in behaviors which are telltale signs of substance abuse and can point to potential cocaine addiction.

Top Signs Of Cocaine Use

Cocaine abuse can result in both physical symptoms and mental health issues.

Short-term effects of cocaine abuse include constricted blood vessels, dilated pupils, increased body temperature, heart rate, and blood pressure.

Abuse of this drug can also cause abdominal pain, seizures, and can result in a cocaine overdose, heart attack, and even death.

1. A Constant Runny Nose

Snorting freebase cocaine can cause damage to the respiratory system and the nasal glands due to its toxicity. This can cause nosebleeds and runny noses.

If someone is acting overly energized or withdraws from conversation or social events for a prolonged and unusual period of time and has these characteristics, they may have a SUD.

2. Having Cocaine Eyes

Cocaine is a highly addictive stimulant drug that can have serious side effects. One of the most noticeable side effects is changes in eye appearance.

People who abuse cocaine often have what is called “cocaine eyes.” Cocaine eyes can be described as having red, bloodshot eyes, and the whites of the eyes may also look yellowish or greenish.

The pupils may be dilated or constricted, and the person may have trouble blinking or keeping their eyes open.

This is because the drug’s effects constrict blood vessels which can tighten ocular nerves.

3. Experiencing Mood Swings

One of the most common signs of cocaine addiction is experiencing mood swings. Cocaine can cause a person to feel happy and energetic one minute, then anxious and paranoid the next.

These sudden changes in mood can be difficult to deal with and can lead to activities and can result in the development of several behavioral health and mental health disorders.

4. Finding Cocaine Paraphernalia

If you or someone you know is abusing cocaine, there are several signs to look for.

One of the most telling signs is the presence of cocaine paraphernalia, which is any type of equipment that is used to produce, consume, or store cocaine.

Some common examples of cocaine paraphernalia include:

  • pipes used to smoke cocaine
  • spoons for heating the cocaine and liquifying it for intravenous use
  • razor blades used to cut the substance up into lines for snorting
  • small plastic bags used to store the white powder form of cocaine
  • rolled up dollar bills or other paper tubes for snorting

5. Experiencing Financial Problems

Cocaine abuse can lead to a number of financial problems. The most obvious problem is that cocaine is an expensive drug to buy.

This can lead to people spending large amounts of money on the drug, which can put a strain on their finances.

Other financial problems associated with cocaine abuse include:

  • getting into debt
  • filing for bankruptcy
  • losing a job
  • having to constantly borrow money

Treatment Options For Cocaine Use Disorder

Fortunately, there are a number of treatment programs and services to help people overcome the cocaine withdrawal symptoms and addictions they may be experiencing as a result of a SUD.

Cocaine addiction treatment usually involves:

  • evidence-based therapies
  • drug addiction education and counseling
  • detox programs
  • drug use prevention classes
  • craving and withdrawal symptom management
  • counseling for psychosis and other mental illness concerns

Find Substance Use Disorder Treatment Services

If you, a family member, or a loved one is in search of addiction treatment for cocaine, give our free helpline a call today to discuss obtaining a referral to a rehab center near you.


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