Signs of Cocaine Addiction

Drug abuse is a serious problem, which is why it is important to know the signs of cocaine addiction. More drug users are addicted to cocaine than any other type of drug. Watch for the signs of cocaine addiction to be sure none of your loved ones are facing addiction.


There is a common misconception about cocaine in that many believe you cannot become addicted to the substance because the chemical makeup of the drug does not have any addictive ingredients. However, what users may not understand is how they can easily become addicted to the high they achieve when they ingest cocaine. Read on to find out more about cocaine and how to watch for the signs for cocaine addiction as well as treatment options. 

What is cocaine?

There are several different names for the illegal substance cocaine, also called nose candy, snow, toot, coke or rock cocaine. It is a substance that is derived from the coca plant. There are about 25 million people in the United States who have used cocaine at least once in their lifetime. The    effects of cocaine initially cause the user to become intoxicated, which causes an intense feeling of euphoria and pleasure. All of the body's senses become heightened. The user may also take on feelings of hyperactivity and excessive alertness. However, once the feeling of euphoria or the "high" wears off, the user may become irritable, easily agitated and feels uncomfortable in their own body.  This works during the intoxication stage, which tends to dramatically increase the release of the neurotransmitters, serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine. 

Signs of cocaine addiction:

There are several causes that are a combination of biological, social and psychological that account for the likelihood of cocaine abuse and addiction in a particular person. Signs of cocaine addiction to watch out for include the person acting on edge, exhibiting increase hyperactivity and paranoia. The person may also experience financial problems or weak excuses or reasons for not having money. They will try to hide their addiction, which may include hiding, acting scared or making frequent trips to the bathroom. If they cannot get their fix, they will be angry or extremely irritable or desperate. Other signs of cocaine addiction include the person having frequent cases of bloody nose, or runny nose. They may constantly be sniffing or wiping their nose. Those who are exhibiting signs of cocaine addiction might also start neglecting other aspects of their life like work, school or their families in order to get high or recovering from the effects of the drug. They might also be more likely to participate in risky sexual behavior, domestic violence, suicide, homicide or other forms of violence. There is no actual test that is used to determine if someone is addicted to cocaine, which is why doctors will usually check for these signs of cocaine addiction in order to determine the likelihood of a person being addicted to the drug.  Other signs of cocaine addiction may include:

  • Insomnia
  • Job loss
  • Blood shot eyes
  • Wide open pupils
  • Debt or other money problems
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Family issues
  • Other relationship problems

Treatment options:

For those are exhibiting signs of cocaine addiction, treatment must happen quickly in order to best avoid the complications of severe drug addiction like overdosing, suicide and other health complications with the heart and other bodily organs. Unfortunately less than 10 percent of users that are addicted actually seek treatment. When undergoing treatment for cocaine addiction, the user will most often be more successful in quitting the drug and having a lesser chance of relapse if they enter an in-patient treatment center. This way, doctors and other medial professionals will be available during the entire process of withdrawal. Counseling and therapy is also a vital treatment option that cocaine users must undergo in order to successfully stop using the drug and avoid relapsing. Counseling is important because sometimes there are underlying emotional issues as to why the  user stared using the drugs in the first place. Sometimes doctors will prescribe certain medications to help cocaine addictions abstain from drugs including the medication propranolol. A medication like vigabatrin might also be prescribed to assist in reducing the feelings of withdrawal. Getting support from family members, friends and support groups is also a good way to help treat cocaine addiction. Having the support behind the user can help them stay away from relapsing and using the drugs again.


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