National Institutes of Health

Signs of Cocaine Abuse and Addiction

Cocaine speeds up your whole body. Your heart beats fast. You talk, move, and think fast. Your body feels too hot. You might shake and twitch. You don't sleep or eat much.

Cocaine can make you feel happy and excited. But then your mood can change. You can become angry, nervous, and afraid that someone's out to get you. You might do things that make no sense.

After the "high" of the cocaine wears off, you can "crash" and feel tired and sad for days. You also get a strong craving to take the drug again to try to feel better.

A person who snorts cocaine through the nose can get nosebleeds. He can even lose his sense of smell. His nose may be runny all the time, like he always has a cold.

A person who injects (shoots up) cocaine will have marks where the needle went in, usually on his arms.

People addicted to cocaine might take bigger doses or take it more often to get high. A cocaine high usually doesn't last very long. So people take it again and again to try to keep feeling good.

People who are trying to quit taking cocaine might:

  • Act nervous and restless
  • Feel very sad and tired
  • Have bad dreams
  • Be suspicious of people and things around them

They will feel a strong need to take the drug.

Man sitting alone and looking down

After the "high" of the cocaine wears off, you can "crash" and feel tired and sad for days. You also get a strong craving to take the drug again to try to feel better. (Photo information)