The first step in stopping an epidemic is gaining more information about the Cocaine detox process and what Cocaine withdrawal really means. If you’re ready to get your loved ones the help they need, read on below.
What is Cocaine?
Cocaine is a drug that is commonly used as a stimulant. Cocaine gets its powerful effect from the coca leaf where it’s derived from.
Common names that Cocaine is found under on the streets include:
Often when people are abusing and purchasing Cocaine on the street, it’s not pure Cocaine. Dealers cut the Cocaine with several other items like talcum powder or flour to sell less of the Cocaine but still make their profit.
There are several ways that abusers use Cocaine. The most common way that it’s abused is by snorting it through the nasal canal, which can cause things like a deviated septum or nasal blockages, otherwise known as Cocaine noise.
Others take the Cocaine and rub it on their gums or dissolve it into a liquid, making it easier to inject. For those looking for help for a loved one or yourselves, you must educate yourself on all things that have to do with Cocaine addiction.
Now that you’ve gotten to know a bit more about the drug itself, here are some of the most common Cocaine Withdrawal symptoms.
Effects of Cocaine
Now you know that cocaine is a stimulant drug that makes a person more alert and gives feelings of euphoria. It’s known as one of the world’s most addictive drugs. When a person uses cocaine, they might feel some immediate effects from the drug.
- Sensitivity to Touch, Light, or Sound
Cocaine’s effects will happen almost immediately and will fade away within a few minutes to an hour.
How intense the feelings you get and how long the effects last are dependent on the method of use. Intravenous use or smoking cocaine produces a much quicker and stronger but shorter-lasting high than snorting would. The high from snorting cocaine may last 15 to 30 minutes. The high from smoking may last anywhere from 3 to 10 minutes.
Signs of Cocaine Use
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, physical and behavioral signs of cocaine use include:
- Dilated Pupils
- Higher Body Temperature
- Higher Blood Pressure
- Raised Heartbeat
- Appetite Loss
- Erratic Actions and Behaviors
Cocaine is a highly addictive drug, but it may be hard to recognize cocaine addiction. Craving cocaine and ignoring the consequences that come with it are some telling signs of an addiction.
Some people say psychological addiction is often the hardest part to get control of. However, there are undeniable physical symptoms of addiction as well.
Some signs of cocaine addiction include:
- Drastic Changes in Sleep Pattern
- Ignoring Hygiene
- Mood Swings
- Risky Behavior and Actions
- Financial Issues
- Legal Problems
- Loss of Interest in Activities you Once Enjoyed
If someone becomes addicted to cocaine, it can be challenging for them to stop. This is a result of cocaine abnormally increasing the levels of dopamine in the brain. Eventually, it will reprogram the entire reward system in the brain.
Can You Overdose on Cocaine?
Those around you need to recognize any potential indicators of an overdose. Time is crucial in such a situation. Cocaine is one of the more serious stimulants out there on the streets, mainly because of the potential for overdose that can lead to death. Symptoms of cocaine overdose include:
- Trouble Breathing
- Chest Pain
- Vomiting or Nausea
Death can occur due to a multitude of complications, including heart attack, seizure, and stroke.
What is Cocaine Withdrawal?
Cocaine withdrawal occurs when someone that has used a lot of cocaine or continuously used cocaine, cuts down or quits taking the drug completely. Symptoms of withdrawal can occur even if the user is not completely off cocaine and still has some drugs in their blood.
When cocaine use is stopped or when a binge ends, a crash follows almost right away. The cocaine user has a strong craving for more cocaine during a crash.
Cocaine withdrawal often has no visible physical symptoms, such as the vomiting and shaking that accompany withdrawal from a different substance.
Cocaine Withdrawal Symptoms
Withdrawal is the body’s reaction to the absence of a substance it’s addicted to. Cocaine withdrawal may include:
- Intense cravings
- Suicidal thoughts
How difficult cocaine withdrawal depends on the severity of a person’s habit. But if someone is going cold turkey, doing so at a detox center can help ease the symptoms.
In addition to a higher chance of death or complications from a drug overdose, cocaine abuse can also cause significant long-term health damage.
When someone is going through Cocaine withdrawal, they will experience physical symptoms noticeable to others around them. The first symptom they’ll experience is an inability to reach levels of pleasure.
Some physical symptoms can include:
- Restless Behavior
- General Feeling of Discomfort
- Increased Appetite
- Slowing of Activity
When you’re constantly under the influence of drugs, the area of your brain responsible for releasing pleasure chemicals is activated at all times. Once a person stops using Cocaine, they are no longer able to reach levels of pleasure or satisfaction because their brain chemistry has been altered due to the presence of the drug.
As we mentioned, Cocaine is a stimulant, and once someone stops using it, they will begin to feel increasingly tired. Instead of being on the go and moving, they’ll be increasingly sleepy and tired.
However, sleeping will become challenging to do because their body is craving the drug. Because Cocaine is no longer in their system, they could experience tremors and muscle pains and increase their appetite.
Be mindful that during the initial phases of Cocaine withdrawal, a person’s irritability level will also be quite high.
As mentioned above, several physical symptoms come with detox. A series of psychological symptoms will show as a person continues through the withdrawal process.
Symptoms of cocaine withdrawal may include:
- Very Down and Depressed Mood
- Vivid or Unpleasant Dreams
The brain has to undergo a healing process that can bring on several different symptoms that aren’t pleasant to experience. The first symptom a person may undergo is severe anxiety and depression.
Anxiety over having to embrace every day without the motivation of drugs and depression as emotions and things that were buried for so long begin to come back to them to be addressed. A person might also become overwhelmingly paranoid about their surroundings and the people around them.
This is a side effect that comes from not getting a proper amount of rest. Someone might begin to hear and see things that aren’t there but look and sound real. As mentioned earlier, irritation is a common symptom.
A person used to being high won’t enjoy the sick and lethargic feeling that comes with not being high. Thus, because they have to adapt to this, it’s likely they will snap at others and over things that are otherwise not as serious as it seems.
Cocaine Withdrawal Timeline
First 1-3 hours
Symptoms emerge as soon as usage stops. Users start to feel irritable, anxious, exhausted, and have an increased appetite. Cocaine cravings actually decrease during this period.
Intense cravings for cocaine arise. Users feel exhausted but have trouble falling asleep. Vivid, unpleasant dreams are common, as well as depressive mood swings.
Depression and strong cocaine cravings continue. Recovering users might find it hard to concentrate or stay emotionally level. Irritability and agitation are also common in this stage.
The mind and body begin to heal, and withdrawal symptoms tend to diminish. Cocaine cravings can still crop up during this period. General anxiety and uneasiness sometimes return as well.
Cocaine Addiction Treatment
After a person has made it through the withdrawal process, the hard work begins. You can only move forward with treatment once you’ve gained a clear mind and can discern the things that you’re going to learn as you work your way through treatment.
Cocaine Addiction Treatment plans include a combination of things like group sessions. In these sessions, you’ll get to interact with others that have been in similar situations as you and share your stories with them.
There will also be individual sessions. During these individual sessions, a counselor will take you on an in-depth tour of your past drug addiction.
You’ll identify the reasons your drug addiction began, what kept you in it, and things that trigger your addiction. Understanding your triggers will make it easier to learn ways to identify them and either avoid or learn to cope with them when they happen.
Sobriety isn’t a dream. It can be a reality for anyone that wants it, but it’s challenging and takes hard work to achieve and remain sober.
Cocaine Detox 101: The First Step in Recovery
Cocaine detox will test a person’s will and motivation to get and remain sober. They’ll experience both physical and psychological symptoms that come with recovery, but once the withdrawal is over, the real work can begin.
Are you or someone you love struggling with Cocaine addiction? Here at Wavelengths Recovery, we have the resources you need on your side.
We understand that this journey might seem like a scary one, but we’ve also got the success stories that will help you stay motivated. What are you waiting for?