Cocaine Addiction

Cocaine addiction is characterized by an intense psychological desire to use cocaine on a regular basis. Cocaine use can result in damage to the cardiovascular system and the central nervous system. Cocaine constricts blood vessels in the brain, which can cause strokes; it can also constrict arteries in the heart, and even cause heart attacks.

The use of cocaine can cause erratic mood swings, paranoia, sleeplessness (insomnia), psychosis, high blood pressure, tachycardia (rapid heartbeat), anxiety, panic attackscognitive impairments, and drastic changes in personality that can lead to inconsistent, aggressive, compulsive, and even criminal behavior.

Signs of Cocaine Dependence

  • Isolation (“hiding out”)
  • Abnormal sleeping habits
  • Loss of appetite, eating less than usual
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Erratic behavior
  • Unpredictable mood swings
  • Constant sniffling/running nose
  • Nosebleeds
  • Anxiety, restlessness, inability to sit still
  • Paranoia
  • Serious skin infections, allergic reactions

Cocaine Withdrawal Symptoms: Physical & Psychological

  • Paranoia
  • Depression
  • Exhaustion, fatigue
  • Anxiety
  • Itching
  • Mood swings
  • Irritability
  • Fatigue
  • Insomnia
  • Nausea, vomiting
  • Schizophrenic symptoms (e.g. delusions, disorganized speech & thought)
  • Formication (a crawling sensation felt on the skin also known as “coke bugs”; only occurs in some cases, but symptoms can last for weeks or months)
  • Persistent craving for cocaine even after other withdrawal symptoms have dissipated

Resources: Cocaine Addiction

Cocaine and Psychiatric Symptoms – NIH

Cocaine – Wikipedia

Signs and Symptoms of Drug Use – Narconon International

Cocaine dependence – Wikipedia

Crack cocaine – Wikipedia

Coming down, crashing after drug use – Wikipedia

Cocaine Abuse Symptoms, Signs and Addiction Treatment

Cardiovascular system – Wikipedia

Central nervous system – Wikipedia

Cocaine Use and Its Effects – WebMD

Panic attacks, panic disorder – Mayo Clinic