Cocaine is second biggest killer among illegal drugs. However, recognizing the signs of cocaine addiction is not easy. You could look out for these red flags.
Signs of Cocaine Use
The effects of cocaine use start soon after consumption and may last about an hour. Some of these are immediate side effects while others are the result of prolonged use.
- Physical Signs – Nosebleeds, jaw clenching, muscle twitches, tremors or shakiness, increased body temperature, weight loss
- Mental / Emotional Signs – Excitability, overconfidence, mood swings, depression, restlessness, paranoia, talkativeness
- Other signs – Social isolation, risky behaviors, changes in sleeping and eating patterns, poor personal hygiene, financial problems
Since the high from cocaine lasts a relatively short period, users may use several doses. Consuming large quantities can lead to unpredictable and even violent behavior. Such changes in your loved one’s behavior could be signs of a cocaine abuse problem.
Apart from the signs mentioned above, there are other indications of cocaine use – drug paraphernalia, such as white powder buildup, syringes, or glass pipes. And some of these items may be hiding in plain sight. For instance, dollar bills in a wallet are normal but rolled up dollar bills in a drawer aren’t. Watch out for –
- Dollar bills
- Hollow pens
- Snuff bullets
- Small mirrors
- Lockets and bulky rings
- Small, re-sealable plastic bags
- Razor blades
- Plastic cards
Harmful Effects of Long-Term Cocaine Use
Symptoms of prolonged use include:
- Loss of smell
- Trouble swallowing
- Tooth decay
- Loss of appetite
- Sexual dysfunction
- Severe depression
- Delirium or psychosis
- Liver and kidney damage
- Lung damage
- Heart disease
- Rare autoimmune diseases
- Permanent damage to blood vessels
If you suspect a loved one of cocaine use, seek help right away.