Symptoms of Cocaine Overdose

What is the Symptoms of Cocaine Overdose

Glossing over the Dangers of Cocaine

Even in Hollywood, where the crudest, depraved, and unacceptable activities are glamorized, most hard drugs are presented in a negative light. We’ve seen this time and time again when it comes to heroin in movies like “Requiem for a Dream” and meth using movies like “Spun.”

However, no matter where you look, cocaine always seems to be a glamorized drug. Individuals who have battled cocaine abuse disorder and won would end up telling you different.

This is what makes cocaine such a dangerous drug. Especially in today’s society, where news of opioid and meth overdose deaths are dominating the headlines, cocaine is quietly being overlooked.

If we’re not careful, this lack of awareness can lead a whole generation of young people into the hands of substance abuse disorder. The bottom line is, that there just isn’t enough awareness regarding the dangers of cocaine abuse, specifically when it comes to a cocaine overdose.

Can You Overdose on Cocaine?

Many people are under the impression that you can’t overdose on cocaine. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth.

As all the attention has been on opioids and, more recently, crystal meth – cocaine is still as deadly as ever. In all reality, cocaine and meth are about neck and neck when it comes to overdose deaths, with both hovering somewhere between the 12,000 and 15,000 deaths-per-year mark since about 2016.

This is far from a glamorous or safe drug, but you won’t hear much about these overdose deaths on the news. When it comes to gross missteps like this in terms of public awareness, it becomes the job of the family member, the friend, or any other type of mentor to instill the facts regarding these dangers to young people.

Would you know what to do if someone was displaying signs of a cocaine overdose? Do you know the signs to watch out for?

What Does a Cocaine Overdose Look Like?

Individuals going through a cocaine overdose are in an extremely dangerous situation, especially considering the potential for heart damage. One of the greatest risks associated with an overdose is the potential to experience a heart attack or other heart-related issues.

During a cocaine overdose, the heart rate and blood pressure spike. If help isn’t sought, these levels are high enough to lead to additional complications. It’s important to be aware of the other signs so you can get help before it’s too late. Cocaine overdose victims will display the following signs:

  • Enlarged pupils
  • Intense sweating
  • Labored breathing
  • High body temperature initially, followed by clammy skin
  • Loss of color
  • Convulsions
  • Twitches or tremors
  • Complaints of chest pain/numbing in one arm
  • Unconsciousness
  • Dry mouth

Getting help in the right amount of time is vital during a potential cocaine overdose. While it’s not known how long it takes for cardiac arrest to begin, in certain situations, the risk may be elevated, depending on prior health conditions and the among ingested.

The Stages of Cocaine Overdose Symptoms

What does a user feel like when they’re going through a cocaine overdose? Not always will the user understand they’re going through an overdose. Many times, they’ll be physically unable to convey how they feel.

The answer to this question also depends on how far long the overdose has progressed. Normally, the process entails the following:

  1. Initial feelings may include an extreme feeling of euphoria or a rush of energy. This happens after an extremely large dose of cocaine.
  2. Users may find it difficult to breathe and experience intense sweating. The pulse rate steadily increases, as well as the blood pressure.
  3. At this point, anxiety may begin to take hold, and the user may feel panicked. Normally this is the stage where chest pains or numbing in the arm may be experienced.
  4. The user may experience nausea and begin vomiting/foaming at the mouth. oIt’s vital that emergency medical services are contacted to transport the individual to the ER. The stage after this one normally includes convulsions, which may segue into cardiac arrest.

How does it feel for the individual who is experiencing the overdose?

How Do Cocaine Overdose Symptoms Feel?

How Do Cocaine Overdose Symptoms Feel

 

During a cocaine overdose, individuals experience a wide range of physical (and mental) feelings in a short time. Some of the most commonly felt symptoms include:

  • Tightness in chest
  • Moderate to severe chest pain
  • Extreme anxiety and distress
  • Difficulty breathing
  • May become disassociated and find it difficult to remain focused or keep a train of thought
  • Ultimately, the user will most likely lose consciousness

Is Cocaine Overdose Common?

Cocaine overdose is probably more common than you think. Using data from last year regarding drug use, it’s estimated that almost 20% of individuals suffering from cocaine abuse disorder end up in the emergency room for a possible overdose.

This ends up totaling somewhere around 110,000 users per year. Out of these 110,000 users, an average of about 15,000 will end up losing their lives to a cocaine overdose.

Except for the number of current users, the statistics surrounding cocaine hospitalization and overdose deaths are nearly identical to methamphetamine numbers in the same category.

Because cocaine overdose is a significant threat, it’s important to understand what to do in the event someone you know is experiencing an overdose.

What to Do for Someone During a Cocaine Overdose

If someone you know is suffering from a cocaine overdose, it’s important to remain calm and exercise proper judgment. The first thing you want to do is contact 911 to ensure an ambulance is already on the way.

Second, you need to assess the situation. What stage of the overdose is the person in? Are they still coherent?

If the individual is still alert and conscious, ask them how they’re feeling. Sit and talk with them to help keep them focused on your voice and not the fact they’ve ingested too much cocaine. The goal is to keep their anxiety at bay.

If they are unconscious or nearing that point, don’t throw water on them or slap them. You might have seen this in movies, but it’s not the right thing to do in real life. Turn the person on their side and put a pillow under their head.

This will stop them from choking if they end up vomiting. Monitor them closely while you wait for EMS to arrive. You need to make sure they’re still breathing and have a pulse.

Actions to Take During a Cocaine Overdose

While you’re waiting for EMS, you need to begin administering CPR if they suddenly stop breathing. You need chest compressions to keep their blood pumping and make sure you’re breathing for them properly.

Remember, it only takes about three minutes without oxygen to suffer brain damage. Typically, this is what causes death in the case of an opioid overdose. It’s not the direct toxicity of the drug itself – it’s the lack of oxygen for too long of a period.

However, in the case of a cocaine overdose, most deaths occur as a result of a heart attack. Not every cocaine overdose leads to a heart attack, though.

It depends on how strong the dose of the drug is and the health of the user’s heart. The chances are high that if the individual has a strong cardiovascular system, they won’t suffer from a heart attack.

This gives them extremely strong odds of making a full recovery. However, another risk currently exists, putting cocaine users in harm’s way of the deadly effects of another drug – fentanyl.

The Risks of Fentanyl as a Cocaine Adulterant

The Risks of Fentanyl as a Cocaine Adulterant

There is currently an extremely high number of substances discovered on the black market that contain high doses of fentanyl. This is particularly alarming, especially considering that most of the users have no idea the drug is adulterated with this deadly opioid.

Batches of other substances have been tested and exhibit the same results – from cocaine to meth, marijuana, and ecstasy, they’re all testing positive for fentanyl. This is causing another surge in overdose deaths of all age groups.

What makes it scarier is the fact that these individuals have no idea these drugs are laced with the powerful opioid. In many cases, people in their company have no idea how to remedy the situation because of the unexpected results.

While it’s currently unclear why doses of fentanyl are being placed in other drug supplies, many people have their theories. One theory to consider is the attempt to force users into a physical dependency on fentanyl.

Once this happens, individuals must consume the drug to even function normally. This would certainly be a way to ensure clients return to buy the same batch, over and over again.

Regardless of the reasoning, it proves the ruthlessness and lack of remorse the organizations that manufacture and distribute these drugs have.

This adds another danger to cocaine use – an already dangerous enough long-term situation.

Long Term Effects of Cocaine Usage

Individuals who engage in long-term cocaine usage face a potentially deadly list of side effects. These effects include:

  • Cardiovascular issues
  • Skin conditions affecting the face
  • Loss of nasal cartilage structure
  • Heart attack and stroke risk
  • Heart disease
  • High blood pressure
  • Anxiety/depression
  • Paranoia/psychosis

Seeking treatment following a cocaine overdose is the best course of action. With the right help, users have a real shot at long-term recovery.

Is Lasting Recovery from Cocaine Addiction Possible?

At Pathfinders Recovery Centers in Colorado and Arizona, we understand that lasting recovery takes a strong team with experience and compassion. This is exactly what we bring to the table.

Recovery isn’t easy – but nothing worth having ever is. We’re right there with you every step of the way, ensuring your comfort and safety while providing you with the education and tools you need for lasting recovery.

Your recovery is calling. Contact Pathfinders today to find out how we can help you start your journey to full, successful recovery from the shackles of regular cocaine use.

Differences Between Crack and Cocaine

Differences Between Crack and Cocaine

Cocaine is a dangerous drug that has caused untold damage to lives and families worldwide. For a long time. Cocaine was the purview of the rich and famous, but in the mid-80s, something changed for the worse. A new version of cocaine came onto the scene. Nicknamed crack, this version of the drug was cheaper and easier to produce.

It was also a lot more dangerous and just as addictive as the original product. Thanks to quick and efficient drug trafficking, cartels were able to dominate low-income neighborhoods with cheap crack, leading to a massive decline in fortunes among the economically depressed parts of the country. Today, crack has been the cause of severe destruction of low-income neighborhoods.

An Overview of Cocaine and Crack

At their core, crack and cocaine are the same substance, albeit made in different ways. Cocaine is manufactured into a powdered form, but when it’s processed into crack, it presents as a rock-like substance. Crack cocaine sees the raw coke powder combined with water and another substance (commonly baking soda) to solidify the powder into a hard stone. The term “crack” stems from the sound the rock makes when heated while being smoked. The effects of crack and cocaine on the body are also similar since they are both stimulants.

How Are Crack and Cocaine Similar?

Crack and cocaine are the same substance essentially. These drugs create a reaction in the body that speeds up metabolic processes. When a person takes either crack or cocaine, it immediately releases dopamine to the brain. Dopamine is the substance the body uses as a reward for doing something positive. However, this dopamine rush is far in excess of what the body is used to handling. After the dopamine high dissipates, it leads to a depression that could spiral into dangerous thoughts. Because the depression is so deep and sudden, people who use either form of cocaine are tempted to keep using it to avoid that depressive episode. People who use either crack or cocaine are at risk of severe ailments, including hallucinations, seizures, arrhythmia, stroke, and sudden cardiac arrest.

Physical Differences Between Crack and Cocaine

Cocaine is a powdered drug that can be snorted or diluted, and injected into the bloodstream. On the other hand, Crack is a rock that is usually heated within a pipe to be smoked. Crack is generally cheaper to buy than cocaine. Crack is a relatively new drug, showing up around the 80s. Cocaine and its precursor, the coca plant, were well known and used in even pre-Columbian times in South and Central America. Crack also carries harsher penalties for having and using it than cocaine does. Crack acts a lot faster than cocaine, allowing a person to get high in a fraction of the time they need with cocaine. Additionally, crack can be considered far more addictive than cocaine, with addiction sometimes setting in after the first use of the substance.

Is Crack More Addictive Than Powdered Cocaine?

Differences Between Crack and Cocaine

Cocaine is a highly addictive substance, and it has historically caused thousands of deaths thanks to overdosing on the substance. However, as addictive as cocaine is, crack may be even more addictive than its counterpart. This addictiveness stems from how crack enters the bloodstream and how fast it interacts with the brain.

A massive high sets in rapidly when a person smokes crack but fades just as quickly. The short, pleasurable nature of the high forces people to want more of the substance to sustain it and avoid the eventual depression. Dependency on a substance sets in when the brain rewires itself to handle the drug’s presence. In this case, this rewiring happens rapidly, sometimes after the first use. Conversely, cocaine may take a little longer to act.

The Cost Differences Between Crack and Cocaine

One of the most compelling reasons for people to use crack is how cheap it is compared to cocaine. Powdered cocaine found popularity among the upper class of the US in the 70s and 80s. The drug became a status symbol, as those who could avoid it spent tons of money on the substance. Its illegality raised the price and made it impossible for those without the economic means to afford the drug.

In the 80s, this changed when crack was first produced. This version of the drug combined cocaine with low-cost baking soda and water to make an even more potent drug that could be mass-manufactured without costing the makers much in terms of time or money. A single kilo of cocaine could make four kilos of crack. The cost of a crack rock was much more affordable to those of lower economic means. Now, even the economically depressed could experience cocaine, which led to an addiction epidemic that still plagues those areas today.

Can You Overdose from Cocaine and Crack?

Cocaine and crack build tolerance within the brain. When someone takes a drug, their brain changes to deal with it. In the case of crack and cocaine, the brain ramps up its ability to respond to dopamine. This change in the brain chemistry means that the user needs more of the substance the second time around to get the same feeling out of the process.

Unfortunately, the obvious side effect of this change is that the person may inadvertently consume more of the substance than is safe. Overdosing from crack or cocaine happens, even in the most meticulous users. Since many users consume the drug in isolated circumstances, no one can know when an overdose happens fast enough to get them the help they need. Most individuals who overdose on these substances die as a result.

Other Risks and Side Effects Of Cocaine And Crack

In addition to overdosing, there are other pressing side effects of crack and cocaine. One of the most apparent, especially in low-income neighborhoods, is the loss of economic freedom. Crack isn’t expensive, but maintaining the habit requires spending a lot of time and money on the drug. If the police arrest a user, they may face jail time and lose their job.

This loss of economic freedom has a knock-on effect of increasing crime in neighborhoods with rampant crack usage. When a person takes crack or cocaine, they will also likely experience several other side effects, including:

  • Mood disorders
  • Headaches
  • Decreased appetite
  • Paranoia
  • Hypersensitivity

A person who uses crack generally smokes it, leading to lung problems and respiratory issues. Cocaine, if snorted, can lead to nosebleeds. If injected, using dirty needles can lead to hepatitis and, on occasion, AIDS.

Differences Between Crack and Cocaine

Can You Get Withdrawals from Snorting Coke?

If you snort coke, it counts as consuming the drug. As with all other drugs, snorting or consuming it in different ways can lead to dependence on the substance. If a person becomes dependent on the substance, then withdrawals can happen as a result. Smoking crack can also lead to withdrawals if someone becomes dependent on the substance. The withdrawal process can take time and may have various side effects, including:

  • Poor cognitive function
  • Irritability
  • Agitation
  • Drowsiness
  • Apathy
  • Insomnia
  • Intense drug cravings

The symptoms start within the first day of the person not using the substance, but they increase in intensity. Withdrawal is the first step of recovering from a dependence on the substance. The side effects are the body’s way of convincing the person to keep using the substance. Detox is a form of controlled withdrawal.

Many facilities offer medically supervised detox since symptoms can become extreme in rare cases. It’s better to be prepared than to do it and hope for the best. Pathfinders Recovery has a dedicated team to help with crack and cocaine detox, ensuring that patients get the best care possible.

Finding Treatment for Cocaine in Any Form

Detox is the first step in overcoming crack and cocaine addiction, but it’s not the only thing that needs to be done. While detox will help a person break their physical dependence on the substance, a significant portion of a person’s mind is still stuck on using it.

Therapeutic methods such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) can help individuals struggling to recover from the drug’s psychological hold on their bodies. Therapy can happen in either inpatient or outpatient settings, although a particular type of treatment might appeal to a person more than the other because of how they are delivered.

Residential Treatment for Cocaine and Crack

Inpatient treatment centers focus on helping people overcome their addiction by reducing the number of distractions around them. Inpatient facilities also limit visits from family and friends and keep the facility free of all drugs at all times. The downside of checking into an inpatient facility is that it is expensive and requires the person to put their life on hold for a bit. The expense has become less of an issue as many inpatient facilities now offer payment plans or take insurance for client stays.

Outpatient facilities are cheaper but require a much bigger commitment from the client. A person could theoretically continue their job and life uninterrupted at outpatient therapy once they meet their scheduled appointments at the rehab center. Outpatient treatment is less intrusive, but it also opens up a person to more temptation from the drug.

Long Term Recovery from Cocaine Is Possible

Cocaine and crack can cause massive problems to a person, but there are ways to deal with this issue. Long-term recovery at a rehab center like Pathfinders Recovery focuses on both the physical and mental aspects of addiction.

Our trained staff can develop individual plans that appeal to each patient’s needs. Through CBT and other proven scientific methods, we help patients overcome their dependence on a substance so they can see a brighter future. Contact us today to experience a different kind of recovery – one that’s focused on you.

Cocaine Side Effects And How To Tackle Them

Cocaine side Effects

Prevalence of Cocaine Side Effects

Pathfinders Recovery Center consistently emphasizes the need for cocaine side effects treatment. With the right treatment, not only can the client live a happier life but even potentially avoid drug usage. Located in Colorado and Arizona, their expertise of 25 years has helped many people who have gotten admission to the center. They offer multiple forms of care that suit best for the client and help them passage back to society.

Cocaine is consumed by around 14-21 million individuals all over the world, most of which suffer from dire cocaine side effects. It is easier for cocaine to be misused and create an unhealthy dependence between the said drug and the consumer.  Also called cocaine hydrochloride, it is one of the most stimulating and dangerous substances.

It is often used for medical intentions as it helps in relieving pain and anesthetic purposes but has a high potential for substance abuse. In cases like that, it is crucial to seek help from rehabilitation centers to get adequate help as cocaine side effects can get too much to handle.

Why it’s Important to Address Cocaine Side Effects

The longer a person consumes cocaine, the further their brain adapts to it. To get the same high, the individual will need a higher dosage. This may result in a hazardous addiction or overdose.

Stronger, more regular dosages may potentially induce long-term alterations in the chemistry of the brain. The body becomes dependent on the substance. This might make it difficult to concentrate, sleep, and retain information from memory.

Even in younger and otherwise healthy people, use may result in a catastrophic heart attack. Taking big quantities is linked to unpredictable and perhaps aggressive behavior.

This is why it is so important to address cocaine side effects.

Cocaine Basics

The medicine floods the pleasure-controlling areas of the brain with dopamine, an organic biochemical transmitter in the body. This increase generates a high, which is characterized by heightened sensations of energy and attentiveness. It is derived from the coca leaves, which are indigenous to South America. Cocaine, as a nervous system stimulator, raises key life processes including blood pressure, core temperature, and pulse rate. Cocaine users often need less rest, have less hunger, and have greater energy and concentration. They may be more chatty and lively, have greater self-confidence, and feel better.

At this stage, a cocaine dependence may develop, leading a habitual cocaine abuser to feel melancholy, irritated, and worried without it, in addition to desires for the substance. This is the phase where more dire cocaine side effects start showing up. People may continue to misuse cocaine to manage their pleasure and satisfaction and avoid the side effects of cocaine withdrawal. This fundamentally affects the brain’s motivation and reward circuits. Cocaine consumers may believe that they need the substance to feel normal again, which eventually leads up to further cocaine side effects.

Side Effects of Cocaine use

Cocaine side Effects

Any usage, whether for short or long periods, is linked with adverse effects. Cocaine side effects are no different.

Cocaine usage causes restricted blood vessels, pupil dilation, elevated body temperature, breathing rate, and hypertension in the short term.

When short-term usage crosses the border into long-term consumption, the chances of additional and exacerbated undesirable outcomes grow. These long-term health hazards demonstrate the devastating effect cocaine has on the physical health of its users. Cocaine consumption may lead to serious medical consequences. Here are some of the major cocaine side effects:

1. Cocaine effects on breath

Major respiratory and pulmonary problems of cocaine addiction have been recorded more often in recent times, with the majority of patients being injectable consumers, freebase intakers, or crack inhalers. Cocaine effects on breath include acute and chronic effects on the lungs. Cocaine’s effects on the lungs vary depending on the mode of ingestion, dosage size, level of exposure, and the presence of related drugs such as heroin, talcum, or marijuana.

Smoking cocaine may prevent oxygen from reaching the circulation and harm oxygen-transporting vessels, which is responsible for cocaine effects on breath. This may cause significant breathing problems and serious health implications, including irreversible lung damage. Asthma, pneumonia, bronchial asthma, respiratory failure, and emphysema may occur in the user.

2. Cocaine effects on the nose and face

Consuming cocaine via the nose daily may degrade the cartilage and potentially cause the nose to collapse if there is no tissue joining the nostrils. Cocaine effects on the nose and face happen because it restricts blood circulation to the septum, resulting in a gaping wound and a deformed overall nose shape. While the “high” from ingesting cocaine via the nose may last longer than smoking or shooting up, it may cause significant harm.

Cocaine effects on the nose and face cause mucous membrane walls to be damaged and blood circulation to the nose to be disrupted. Although direct contact with cocaine causes damage to the membrane linings, reduced blood flow is caused by cocaine’s effects on neuron releases in the brain, notably adrenaline and norepinephrine. These substances aid in the regulation of blood flow all through the body.

As addiction develops, repeated doses are required to sustain the “high” effect of cocaine. Most of the harm done will be irreversible unless drug usage is stopped. In other terms, once addiction takes hold, cocaine effects on the nose and face keep getting stronger.

3. Cocaine effects on skin

Cocaine has a wide range of effects on the human body. It may harm the skin as well as several internal organs and systems, causing dire cocaine effects on skin. Long-term cocaine usage may harm many different parts of the body. Given that the skin is the body’s biggest organ, it’s no wonder that cocaine is awful for it. Cocaine may gradually destroy this crucial organ that shields the inner workings of our bodies, causing inflammation, blisters, redness, and even rotting of the skin.

Cocaine effects on skin may be caused by a variety of variables, including the reducing agents used to make the drug, how it’s delivered (intravenously vs snorting), and other unhealthy behaviors that might contribute to skin problems, such as poor food, lack of cleanliness, and inadequate sleep.

4. Cocaine Side Effects | Short Term

Because restricted blood vessels impair the circulation of blood in the body, cocaine side effects such as:

  • Stomach discomfort
  • Loss of appetite
  • Sickness
  • Vomiting
  • Constipation

 

Elevated blood pressure and heart rate, as well as reduced blood flow through the arteries, may raise the heart attack risk.

Cocaine usage may produce behavioral changes because it raises the quantity of dopamine in the brain’s reward center. It may cause a person to become more unpredictable and aggressive, as well as more confident and unstoppable, increasing the possibility of them engaging in risky activities that might result in injury.

5. Long Term Cocaine Effects

Consistent and long-term cocaine usage may lead a person to develop a resistance to the drug, requiring more of it to get the same benefits. When the amount or frequency of usage is increased, the effects of cocaine on their mental and physical health are exacerbated.

Because cocaine messes with the way the human brain processes neurotransmitters, users need increasing amounts of the substance to feel “normal.” Cocaine addicts (like most other drug addicts) feel unmotivated in other aspects of their lives.

Cocaine, when taken or snorted daily, may harm the nasal lining and the structure that separates the nostrils. There is a danger of blood poisoning, plasma infections (such as HIV or hepatitis) through sharing gear, ruptured blood vessels, and skin sores while injecting cocaine.

One of the long-term cocaine effects is heart issues. Some individuals suffer from mental health issues, such as chronic depression. Symptoms of ‘cocaine psychosis’ include hostility and unpleasant hallucinations, frequently of insects beneath the skin.

6. Side Effects of Cocaine Withdrawal

Side effects of cocaine withdrawal may include

  • Extreme cravings
  • Despair
  • Anxiety,
  • Furious outbursts
  • Trembling
  • Sleeping difficulty,
  • Muscular soreness

 

These may endure for weeks.

Because cocaine interferes with the brain’s chemical bonus system, a person who is withdrawing may not be able to sense any pleasure feelings without the stimulus of cocaine to activate dopamine. As a result, individuals who stop using cocaine may feel extreme desires for months or even years. Relapses are rather frequent, to avoid side effects of cocaine withdrawal.

Cocaine Treatment Options

Cocaine side Effects

Substance use disorder (SUD) is complicated, and the most successful treatment method is one that is tailored to an individual’s requirements. Many cocaine treatment options use a mix of various tried-and-true approaches. Although research into possible pharmacological therapies for cocaine addiction is underway, no FDA-approved drugs are now accessible for either cocaine detoxification or long-term treatment of cocaine side effects. As a result, behavioral therapies are the main remedy for cocaine consumption.

On top of the hazards of cocaine usage and harrowing cocaine side effects, those with substance use disorders face the social stigma that comes with addiction. Addiction, on the other hand, is not a choice nor a sign of weakness; it is a complicated medical disorder that may be effectively treated. Many individuals enjoy meaningful lives in recovery with the correct care.

Cocaine treatment options may start with a drug detox program that offers 24-hour medical oversight and management to protect the client’s safety. Although no particular drugs are presently licensed specifically to treat cocaine dependence and addiction, medical detox programs may employ pharmaceuticals to assist control cocaine side effects.

If outpatient counseling and treatment are insufficient, a residential treatment program will not only provide the client with access to peers and counselors but will also separate the client from any possible triggering conditions that would normally induce them to use cocaine. It can eventually help eliminate the other cocaine side effects too.

A residential program will enable the individual to leave their regular life behind to more deeply examine the causes of their addiction, break unproductive behaviors, and be more responsible for keeping clean.

Pathfinders is a recovery center that specializes in treating substance use disorders in multiple ways. Not only do they help in eliminating cocaine side effects, but their team have expertise in treating substance use disorders across the spectrum. Joining a recovery center may not guarantee an instant cure. It can, however, be the first and most important step towards a new, free life, changing its trajectory through your input and hard work in an environment designed to help you every step of the way. At Pathfinders, they offer clients comprehensive levels of treatment.

 

With a full continuum of care options, the team at Pathfinders Recovery is ready to meet you (or your loved one’s) needs with a customized plan of care, built around your unique needs and individual considerations. Please don’t hesitate to call today and speak to their dedicated Admissions team!

Cocaine and Bad Breath

Cocaine and bad breath

Does Cocaine Use Cause Bad Breath?

The phrase cocaine abuse often conjures up images of powder trails, dollar bill straws, mirrors, and credit cards. We think of the 1980s when cocaine abuse was common and unquestioned. But many don’t realize that this illicit stimulant is staging a comeback. 

From 1999 to 2019, fatal overdoses involving cocaine rose from 3,822 to 15,883. Cocaine is a powerful and addictive drug that can impair every aspect of life. From mental and physical health complications to financial and relationship troubles, its impacts know no bounds. 

But it’s not just the major, life-changing events that cocaine abusers have to worry about. There are also everyday annoyances like hyperactivity and difficulty sleeping, and other side effects that land somewhere in between. One of those side effects is something called coke mouth. 

Does Cocaine Use Cause Bad Breath

Cocaine and Bad Breath

On top of its many other potentially uncomfortable, unpleasant, painful, or even fatal side effects, cocaine causes a troubling oral condition. For users who rub the substance over their teeth, cocaine and bad breath are intrinsically linked. 

But bad breath is not the only oral concern when it comes to cocaine use. This bad breath is a symptom of a deeper and more concerning problem: dental decay. From bad breath to the loss of teeth, dental decay comes in varying stages and can cause many different problems. 

Cocaine Effects on the Mouth

Users can snort, inject, smoke, or rub the substance over their teeth. The side effects that you experience can vary depending on the method you use, the dose, how often, and for how long. Coke mouth is a side effect that is unique to users who ingest cocaine orally. 

Many users do this to produce a faster high. The short-term side effects of cocaine include euphoric feelings and increased energy and focus. But these side effects never last for long. And what comes next is not worth the tradeoff. 

Cocaine’s effects on the mouth include:

  • Bad breath 
  • Sores in and around the mouth 
  • Tooth decay (either from tooth and gum erosion due to rubbing cocaine there or from neglected hygiene due to cocaine use through other methods) 
  • Gingivitis and other oral diseases 
  • Wear to the teeth and jaw from grinding and clenching 
  • Tooth loss 

Snorting cocaine can also interfere with your oral and nasal health. It can cause you to lose your sense of smell, promote nosebleeds, make it harder to swallow and cause regular hoarseness. It can also cause an overall irritation of your sinuses, which often results in chronic runny noses. 

Cocaine side effects include bad breath

Other Symptoms of Cocaine Use

Different methods of cocaine use can cause different symptoms. Not all of them will be related to the mouth or sinuses. Other side effects of cocaine use include: 

  • Irritability 
  • Paranoia 
  • Hypersensitivity to touch, sound, and sight 
  • Bizarre or unpredictable behaviors 
  • Increased feelings of anger that may escalate to violence
  • Constricted blood vessels and dilated pupils
  • Nausea
  • Fast or otherwise irregular heartbeats 
  • Increased blood pressure and body temperature 
  • Muscle twitches and tremors 
  • General feelings of restlessness 

Smoking cocaine can cause asthma, respiratory distress, and a higher risk of infections. Injecting cocaine puts you at a higher risk of contracting hepatitis C, HIV, and other diseases, as well as infections, scarring, and collapsed veins. 

Over time, left untreated, the side effects of cocaine use only get more severe. It also becomes more likely to suffer life-threatening health impairments and a fatal or non-fatal overdose. 

How Addictive is Cocaine?

Cocaine is a Schedule II drug, which means that it has a high risk for abuse and addiction. The Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) maintains that using cocaine has the potential to lead to severe psychological or physical dependence. Schedule II drugs are considered dangerous. 

Other drugs in the Schedule II class include: 

  • Vicodin 
  • Methamphetamine 
  • Methadone 
  • Hydromorphone or Dilaudid 
  • Demerol 
  • Oxycodone or OxyContin 
  • Fentanyl 
  • Dexedrine
  • Adderall 
  • Ritalin 

As the drug class numbers get lower, they get more dangerous. This means that there is only one class of drugs considered more dangerous or with a higher potential for abuse and addiction. 

Schedule I drugs have no currently accepted medical uses and a high potential for abuse. These drug classifications are there to shed light on the potential dangers of different drugs. Certain Schedule II drugs may have accepted medical uses in the appropriate doses, but they are still considered addictive and dangerous. 

And cocaine is not one that has approved medical purposes in the United States today. Illicit drugs have been more carefully regulated since the drug trade boom of the 80s, but it is still difficult to regulate them fully. 

How to Prevent Bad Breath from Cocaine

The best way to prevent bad breath, tooth decay, and other oral health problems is to stop using cocaine. For many people, this may be easier said than done. But we are here to help. It can be hard to change your life, but it is always worth the effort. A happier, healthier, sober life is a recovery program away. 

Treatment for Cocaine Addiction

Treatment for cocaine addiction starts with a detox. At Pathfinders Recovery Center, we offer personalized detox programs to suit your unique addiction, withdrawal symptoms, and needs. There are three stages to every personalized detox: 

  • Evaluating your situation
  • Stabilizing your condition 
  • Getting you ready for primary treatment 

Personalized and professional drug detox is an excellent first step in the recovery process. Drugs that are as powerful and addictive as cocaine often comes with troubling and overwhelming withdrawal symptoms. 

We can help you manage and overcome these symptoms so that you can stay strong and focused through the vital stage of early sobriety. 

What Happens After the Detox?

What Happens After the Detox

Cocaine detox takes an average of one week. This timeframe and the severity of your withdrawals can vary depending on how long you were using cocaine, how frequently, and how much each time. 

We will guide you through your detox to ensure that you stay safe, strong, comfortable, and hydrated. After your detox, we will help you evaluate your options and decide if you are better suited for one of our personalized inpatient or outpatient programs

Inpatient programs are generally best for patients with moderate to severe addictions and overwhelming or otherwise concerning withdrawal symptoms. Those who are surrounded by drug triggers and temptations could also benefit from a change of pace. 

Those with milder addictions, more manageable withdrawal symptoms, support at home, or work or family obligations that prevent a full-time stay are better suited for outpatient programs. But it is not always easy to tell which program will work best for you. 

We do not expect you to have the answers already or face your recovery on your own. Our team of addiction experts will guide you through making this decision. 

Pathfinders Recovery Center

Today is a great day to make a change. When you choose Pathfinders Recovery Center, you never have to walk the road to recovery alone. Our compassionate and knowledgeable teams, comfortable facilities, and personalized programs have helped thousands change their lives. 

Now, it is your turn. Call our addiction counselors today at 866-576-4892 to get started. They are on call to answer your questions, verify your insurance, and start your intake.