Short and Long-term Effects of Cocaine Addiction
Cocaine is a very addictive drug that can cause damaging results both physically and psychologically. If you or a loved one is using cocaine, then learning about the effects of cocaine addiction can help you decide to seek treatment. Cocaine can be smoked, snorted or dissolved in water and injected. The high from cocaine can last from 5-10 minutes if smoked, and 15-30 minutes if snorted.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, people that use cocaine will tend to use it in a binge pattern. This means that they will use it repeatedly within a short period of time, and at higher doses to sustain their high. It is this practice that can lead them to experience the negative effects of cocaine addiction, and they can start to feel an uncontrollable urge to seek the drug no matter what the consequences may be.
What are the Short-term Effects of Cocaine Addiction?
Once someone starts using cocaine, the changes can be noticed quickly. Depending on the dose and frequency of use, these changes can result in health complications, and other negative consequences that can affect a person’s daily life. Some of the short-term effects of cocaine addiction are:
- Loss of appetite
- Loss of sleep
- Increased heart rate
- Erratic behavior
At the first use, cocaine can make a person feel alert and energetic, but this reaction quickly wears off and the user is tempted to take more cocaine to keep the high going. This can lead in overdosing which can cause coma or death. Continued use of cocaine can have seriously damaging effects. The long-term effects of cocaine addiction can be permanent in most cases.
What are the Long-term Effects of Cocaine Addiction?
Depending the method cocaine is used it can have different physical and psychological effects, with some effects being more serious than others, and causing harm much quicker. Regardless how it is used, cocaine can cause irreversible changes. The common effects of cocaine addiction can be:
- Respiratory failure
- Constant headaches
- Chest pain
- Sexual dysfunction
- Violent or criminal behavior
- Skin abscesses if injected
- Damage to blood vessels in heart and brain
The effects of cocaine addiction are not limited to the ones mentioned above. They can be more severe, and result in death. They can cause serious damage that is impossible to repair. Each individual can experience various changes and effects of cocaine addiction. However, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, with increasing dosage of cocaine, or repeated use, the risk of adverse physical and psychological effects increase.
What to Do Next
If you or someone you care for is showing or experiencing the effects of cocaine addiction, then seeking treatment is an immediate priority. Do not wait until permanent damage takes place, or worse, death occurs. Fatal complications from using cocaine are very real. Talking to licensed addiction counselors can help you or a loved one take the first steps to becoming drug-free, and possibly saving a life. With commitment to stop the addiction, a better and healthier life can be achieved.