Cocaine, a potent central nervous system stimulant derived from coca leaves, has a long and tumultuous history. Originally utilized in the early 1900s for its anesthetic properties, it wasn’t long before its addictive nature became apparent. Today, despite its Schedule II classification indicating its high potential for abuse, cocaine remains a prevalent street drug, typically appearing as a white, powdery substance.
One of the most common methods of consuming cocaine is through snorting. This involves inhaling the powdered form through the nasal passages, where it is absorbed into the bloodstream. For many users, the experience of snorting cocaine or substance use is intense and immediate.
So, what does it really feel like? What are its side effects?
What Does a Cocaine High Feel Like?
Because cocaine is a local anesthetic, it causes numbness to the throat, mouth, and tongue when it is snorted. It can be described as tasting and smelling very chemically or much like gasoline, depending on what the cocaine is mixed with. Since this is an illegal street drug, the smell and taste can vary. In its pure form, it should smell sweet and somewhat floral. Snorting cocaine also tends to burn your nose when first inhaled before becoming numb and will drip down your throat from your nasal cavity long after it is initially snorted.
When you snort cocaine, it is described as a feeling of alertness, energy, and power. One of the main effects of cocaine use is that a person who snorts cocaine feels an intensely pleasurable feeling known as euphoria. This feeling of euphoria is short-term and generally only lasts for about 30 minutes. This feeling happens because cocaine stimulates the brain by affecting how it processes dopamine, which is associated with regulating pleasure responses. People will also feel hyper-stimulated, have reduced fatigue, be more talkative than usual, have an increased libido, be numb to physical and mental pain, and cannot comprehend the danger,
On the flip side, it is also possible to experience anxiety, agitation, restlessness, mood swings, and paranoia. Also, when cocaine is taken over a long period of time, the user can experience these opposite effects during a cocaine high, including sadness and isolation from other people.
Immediately after snorting cocaine, the user will have the following physical symptoms:
- Dilated pupils
- Runny nose that might lead to sinus infections affecting the sense of smell
- Constricted blood vessels
- Increased heart rate
- High blood pressure
- Muscle tension
- High body temperature resulting in increased sweat
- Potentially diarrhea or increased bathroom use
Health Risks of Cocaine Abuse
Repeated cocaine use or other form of stimulant drug use can cause a wide variety of health effects or health problems in the user’s body and could have long-term effects. The consequences of long-term cocaine use include:
- Irregular heartbeat
- Chest pains
- Weight loss
- Impaired thinking and cerebral atrophy
- Bizarre or aggressive behavior
- Heart attack or stroke
Getting Clean From Cocaine
For those struggling with cocaine addiction or cocaine users, seeking treatment is crucial. Detoxification (detox) programs can help individuals safely withdraw from cocaine and manage withdrawal symptoms, while rehabilitation programs offer therapy and support to address the underlying issues driving substance abuse. Additionally, medications, medical advice, and behavioral health therapies tailored to cocaine addiction can aid in long-term recovery and reduce the risk of relapse.
In addition to powdered cocaine, crack cocaine, a crystallized form of the drug, is also widely abused. Smoking crack delivers a rapid and intense high, often leading to compulsive use and addiction. The impact on physical and mental health can be severe, underscoring the urgent need for comprehensive healthcare interventions to address the complex challenges of cocaine addiction and drug abuse.
Furthermore, addiction treatment requires a multi-layered approach for maximum success. The best and safest option to get off cocaine is using one of the many treatment programs we offer at Recreate Life Counseling, a treatment center. We provide partial care and outpatient treatment options that provide therapeutic education and guidance for each individual to help them safely reintegrate into society. With the help of our team of therapists, we offer one-on-one group therapy and many other specialized options to fit each person’s needs.
Addiction isn’t easy to face, and the health risks are not worth a short high. You do not have to face getting sober from cocaine on your own. Our admissions counselors and addiction professionals are available around the clock. We are ready to help you or a loved one overcome the disease of addiction. Now is the time to change your life. Let us help you do it!