NHS Digital figures show that ten people aged in their 90 s were taken to hospital last year with mental and behavioral disorders “due to the use of cocaine”,the Sunday Timesreported.
This is five times more than a decade ago, when two people were hospitalized.
Among those aged 60 and over the number of people treated for cocaine- related disorders has increased from 45 a year to 379.
Experts told the Sunday Times the rise in the number of pensioners taking drugs was due to users living longer, the drug becoming more pure and falling prices.
Dr Emily Finch, vice-chair of the addictions faculty at the Royal College of Psychiatrists, told the paper the trend was “deeply worrying”.
She said: “Many people don’t realize that cocaine use can cause mental health problems, resulting in people becoming so unwell they need to be admitted to hospital.”
Karen Tyrell, from drug charity Addaction, added: “We need to shift the narrative to let people know that it’s OK to ask for help or support at a much earlier stage.”