Cocaine causes a user to feel full of energy. They may even feel somewhat invincible with their heart beats pounding in their rib cage, their eyes wide and pupils, dilated, taking in more light than ever. Everything feels possible. Until they crash and come down, finding themselves right back in the place that they were before taking the drug, likely even more down and ashamed than before the high.


Cocaine is a natural upper. This means that instead of slowing down the systems in the body the way that opioids or sedatives do, the drug makes the user feel full of energy, makes them more alert and focused on whatever the task at hand. It is not hard to see why a person would be so drawn to a substance of this nature. In today’s world, expectations are high. Work and responsibilities are asking more of people than ever before. It is completely obvious why someone would be drawn to a drug that makes you feel like you have the energy you can never seem to find.

However, there are many dangerous and negative side effects that someone suffering from cocaine addiction will encounter. Luckily with treatment at detox centers in NJ it is possible to reach a place of sober living. New Jersey offers some of the best rehab facilities in the nation and at Discovery Institute you can find the path to sobriety again.


Side Effects of Cocaine

Discovery InstituteMood Changes: Though the initial effects of cocaine can be an elevated mood, it is not always a lasting positive moods change. A bad trip for a user can turn from motivated and happy energy, to a restless anger, nerves, and even paranoia. The paranoia can sometimes create a violent fear based reaction in a user, and they may become volatile and dangerous to themselves or others.


Makes A User Feel Sick: Cocaine can make a user feel sick. It can catalyze extreme body discomfort and pain in the stomach, headaches, nausea leading to vomiting. It can even cause a user to shake or pass out.


Loss of Appetite: Cocaine, like many uppers, can cause a severe loss of appetite, perhaps even spurring rapid and dangerous weight loss. This can eventually lead to malnutrition and even death when the drug addiction is unchecked.


Cardiac Complications: Because of the energy  that cocaine creates in a person’s body, the cardiac muscle suffers. When a person’s body is pushing for days at a time and their heart rate is sped up so much, the heart’s physiology can even change. All of this speed can lead to heart attack and death.


Stroke: For the same reasons someone using cocaine may cause an addict to suffer from a heart attack, they may also experience a stroke, which some people describe as a heart attack in your brain, leading to slurred speech and possibly death.


Infectious Diseases: Cocaine is sometimes mixed with water or alcohol and injected. Anytime someone uses a drug intravenously, it becomes more likely that the person will contract some kind of infectious disease like HIV or Hepatitis.


How Can a User Know if They’re Overdosing?

A cocaine user should look for any of the following signs and symptoms of overdose:

  • Throwing up
  • Chest pain
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Feeling abnormally warm
  • Experiencing panic
  • Seeing hallucinations

Cocaine Chemical Dependency Treatment & Rehabilitation

Cocaine has a short half life in the body so users often come back to the drug over and over to find that focus and drive that initially made them feel invincible, or at least like they could manage their lives. The problem is though that with the side effects of the drug, and the short life of a high, those addicted to the drug experience strong cravings that feel sometimes to be impossible to overcome. Treatment is needed for successful recovery. If you have questions about drug and alcohol addiction treatment call Discovery Institute today.


Reviewed for Medical & Clinical Accuracy by Dr. Jeffrey Berman, MD

Dr. Jeffrey Berman, MDDr. Jeffrey Berman is a psychiatrist in Teaneck, New Jersey and is affiliated with Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital. He received his medical degree from State University of New York Upstate Medical University and has been in practice for more than 20 years. He also speaks multiple languages, including French and Hebrew.

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