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Signs, Symptoms & Side Effects of Cocaine Abuse

Last Updated: November 03, 2022

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Cocaine abuse and addiction can be extremely destructive. The effects of the substance can be very dangerous, even deadly. Here we will go into more detail about the side effects, signs and symptoms of cocaine use.

Immediate or Short-Term Effects of Cocaine Use

Cocaine is a stimulant like methamphetamines or amphetamines. Because of this, whenever someone uses cocaine, they can feel a sense of euphoria or extreme energy. Some of the other effects of taking the drug include a generally elevated mood as well as inflated sense of self.

People often abuse cocaine because they believe it will help them with their performance in some way – whether at school or at work. They also believe it will help them to accomplish tasks that are a bit of a challenge. Sometimes people take cocaine as a party drug, using it to stay awake for hours or even days. Many people take cocaine as an appetite suppressive that will help them to lose weight.

There are many negative side effects associated with cocaine use as well. For example, cocaine use causes anxiety, restlessness, irritability, panic and also paranoia.

The way the drug is consumed has an impact on the number of side effects that occur. For example, those who smoke or inject the drug may feel the effects more quickly, but they will not last as long whereas the opposite is true for those who snort the drug. One reason why crack cocaine is so addictive is because of the rapid onset of effects when smoking, especially in comparison to snorting powder cocaine.

Cocaine-Related Damage to the Mouth & Nose

There are some physical symptoms that you need to be aware of. People who frequently use cocaine may have issues with their mouth and the erosion of the surface of their teeth. There may be tooth decay or lesions in the mouth. This is especially the case with smoking crack cocaine.

Those who snort powder cocaine often have problems with their nose. They may have frequent nose bleeds or a runny nose. They may also have chronic symptoms that seem like cold or flu symptoms, and they may lose their sense of smell.

Long-Term Side Effects of Cocaine Use

Addiction is the most common side effect of long-term cocaine use. As cocaine is used regularly over time, the brain’s reward pathways can be changed, essentially creating a dependence upon the substance.

There are a lot of other problems that can be a result of long-term cocaine use. For example, those who frequently use the substance over a long period of time often experience anxiety, insomnia, issues with the cardiovascular symptom, a greater risk for seizures and a greater risk for developing Parkinson’s disease.

If you or a loved one feel you may have a problem with cocaine, it is important to find cocaine addiction treatment in Ohio. The Recovery Village Columbus offers both inpatient and outpatient treatment programs that can help you to start a path to recovery.

Commons Signs of an Addiction

Although many people believe that cocaine can be used safely in a recreational way because it’s not addictive, this is not the case. In Ohio, cocaine is one of the main substances people seek treatment for.

Signs of cocaine addiction can include a preoccupation with the drug. If you are constantly thinking about how you can get more of the substance, you may have an addiction. Those who are addicted to cocaine may also experience depression, insomnia and manic behavior. Another sign of being addicted to cocaine is the inability to function without the substance.

Other signs of cocaine addiction can include:

  • Legal or money issues
  • Lying about or hiding use of the substance
  • Difficulty in relationships with others
  • Lack of interest in activities that the person used to be interested in
  • Failing in responsibilities such as schoolwork, work duties and/or family commitments


Our Recovery Advocates are ready to answer your questions about addiction treatment and help you start your recovery.