Drugs That Make People Happy and Talkative

effects of stimulant use

Most parents understand the potential health risks associated with alcohol and marijuana, but may be less familiar with the effects of powerful illicit stimulants like cocaine and methamphetamine. Among other effects, these substances can make people feel excessively enthusiastic and unusually chatty, which can be dramatic behavioral changes in some cases. Here’s how to tell if your son may be experimenting with or routinely using these dangerous drugs and what you can do to help him quit.

The Effects of Stimulants

Cocaine and methamphetamine affect the central nervous system, producing heightened energy, euphoria and increased sociability. Initially, these effects might seem harmless or even beneficial, as they can make people exceptionally friendly, upbeat and outgoing. However, the risks associated with stimulant use are significant and can lead to severe physical and psychological consequences.

If you worry your son might be using stimulants, you should know how to recognize the typical behavioral and physical signs.

  • Elevated mood and excessive talking: An immediate and noticeable increase in talkativeness and mood can be a red flag. Your son might appear unusually excited or cheerful, often without an obvious reason.
  • Decreased appetite and weight loss: Stimulants are appetite suppressants, which can lead to rapid weight loss. People using these drugs may skip meals, develop inconsistent eating schedules and become malnourished.
  • Unusual energy bursts: Your son may be restless and unable to stay still, staying awake for days or being active at odd hours.
  • Dilated pupils and rapid speech: Physical signs of stimulant abuse include dilated pupils and rapid-fire speech patterns. Your son might also ramble, unpredictably switch between topics or have unrealistic ideas.
  • Crashing: As stimulants wear off, a crash will inevitably follow. Characteristics of a crash include long periods of sleep, intense drug cravings and a depressed mood.
  • Paranoia or anxiety: Stimulant users may become paranoid, agitated or edgy. These symptoms can escalate with frequent use.
  • Social and behavioral changes: You may notice your son has new friends, sudden financial problems or personality changes. Stimulants can also increase aggression, leading to angry outbursts and impulsive behavior – even in people who are typically easy-going.

What Can Parents Do?

Discovering or suspecting that your son is using stimulants can be frightening and confusing. Here are steps you can take to address the situation.

  1. Educate yourself: Understanding the effects, risks and behaviors associated with stimulant use can better prepare you for meaningful conversations.
  2. Communicate openly: Approach your son with concern rather than accusation. Honest, non-judgmental dialogue can encourage him to speak about his experiences.
  3. Seek professional help: If you believe your son is struggling with substance use, contact a professional therapist or a residential rehabilitation center like PACE Recovery. Professional, evidence-based treatment can be crucial in dealing with addiction.
  4. Support recovery: Be compassionate and patient with your son – recovering from a stimulant addiction does not happen overnight. Your love can make a significant difference in your son’s ability to overcome his struggles.

Positive Attitude Changes Everything

Stimulant drugs like cocaine and meth can have severe mental and physical health implications. As a parent, staying informed and vigilant can help you identify and address potential drug use early. At PACE Recovery, we exclusively work with young men dealing with mental and behavioral health disorders, providing tailored treatments that address the symptoms and underlying causes of addiction and co-occurring mental illnesses. Connect with us to learn about men’s-only treatment in California.