Is Your Child a Cocaine Addict?
Nobody wants to think their child or loved one may be using cocaine. While a child using any drug is overwhelming and scary, cocaine carries with it a unique set of fears.
The so-called hard drugs, substances like cocaine, heroin, and meth, immediately make any parent assume the worst. Thinking of your child hunched over in a dingy bathroom, sniffing a potentially lethal white powder, isn’t pleasant. Couple that with the many myths and false information surrounding cocaine and any parent is going to be terrified.
Fortunately, someone close to you using cocaine isn’t a death sentence. Today, a loved one with a cocaine problem has more options for help than ever before!
We at Lighthouse Recovery Institute believe that help and support are vital for every family affected by cocaine use. The first step is simply learning the warning signs of cocaine use.
Signs of Cocaine Use
Find a list of signs common to cocaine use below:
• Dilated pupils – cocaine, among other drugs, dilates the pupils. If your child seems to always have wide eyes, they may be using cocaine.
• Extreme restlessness – cocaine is a CNS stimulant. That means it speeds up how the body processes and sends information. It also gives the user a surge in energy, which can last even after the main effects of the drug have worn off. If your child or loved one is often restless, you may want to examine their other behaviors closely for signs of cocaine use.
• Twitching – much like extreme restlessness, twitching is another common sign of cocaine use. This is also due to cocaine’s stimulant properties. If your child or loved one is twitching and appears to be sullen, this may be a sign of cocaine use.
• Excessive sniffing – Although cocaine can be smoked and injected, most users prefer to sniff the drug. After sniffing cocaine, users will experience a “drip.” This is when cocaine drips from membranes in the nose down the throat. To combat this waste of drugs, users will sniff often. If your child or loved one seems to always have a case of the sniffles, this may be using cocaine.
• Cocaine paraphernalia – These are things like short, chopped straws, rolled up dollar bills, small baggies or vials with white residue, razorblades, scratched up mirrors or CD cases, crack pipes, and syringes. If you find these in a child or loved one’s possessions, they’re probably using cocaine.
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Effects of Cocaine
Find a list of effects common to cocaine use below:
• Increased energy – as mentioned above, cocaine is a CNS stimulant. It works by releasing large amounts of dopamine and then blocking how cells reabsorb the neurotransmitter. In addition to causing euphoria, this surge in dopamine causes the body to release adrenaline and speed up all major systems.
• Increased heart rate & blood pressure – cocaine causes a user’s heart rate to increase dramatically. In turn, this causes their blood pressure to skyrocket. Because of this, cocaine users are at an increased risk for heart attacks and other cardiovascular problems.
• Increased alertness – there’s a reason cocaine users are often shown peeking through the blinds in movies and TV. Not only does cocaine give users more energy, it also makes them hyperaware. After a cocaine binge, this alertness can easily turn to paranoia and fear.
• Euphoria – cocaine makes users feel like they’re invincible. The euphoria produced amplifies user’s normal feelings of happiness and confidence, taking them to all new levels.
• Numbness – in addition to being a CNS stimulant, cocaine is also a topical anesthetic. Cocaine is a vasoconstrictor, which means that it decreases blood flow to wherever it touches. This accounts for the numbness that comes with its use.
• Withdrawals – cocaine withdrawals aren’t the same as heroin withdrawals. Rather than producing a physical dependence, cocaine produces an incredible mental craving. Common withdrawal symptoms include: irritability, restlessness, increased appetite, sleeping for extended periods of time (sometimes upwards of twenty-four hours), depression, and anxiety.
What Do I Do if My Child is Using Cocaine?
Unfortunately, there’s no quick answer for what to do if your child or loved one is using cocaine. It’s a process, the first step of which is to learn as much as you can about cocaine and your child’s use.
While the above signs and effects of cocaine use are important, find out even more about the drug. What are the long-term side effects of cocaine? How dangerous is it? What are the different routes of administration and what hazards does each hold? How much cocaine is your child or loved one using? How long have they been using for? Do they want to stop? If so, what type of help is best suited for them?
A great way to get answers to the above questions is to call a treatment center. Any good treatment center will have outreach coordinators who are happy to share their experience and knowledge about cocaine and recovery with you.
In fact, give Lighthouse a call. We’d be more than happy to answer any and all questions you have. We’re more than simply a rehab. We’re a group of individuals committed to changing how substance abuse and recovery are viewed and treated.
Call us today at 1-844-I-CAN-CHANGE or 1-(561)-381-0015 .