Cocaine Addiction Treatment
Cocaine is a powerful central nervous system stimulant that is often associated with addiction and sometimes glamorized in movies and television shows. According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, in 2014, an estimated 1.5 million people admitted to using cocaine. Adults aged 18 to 25 had a higher rate of cocaine abuse than any other age group.
Cocaine is a dangerous and addictive drug. If you or a loved one are seeking cocaine addiction treatment, the addiction specialists at Destination hope are ready to help you. Contact us to learn more about getting help for cocaine dependence. Call 866-756-HOPE.
What is Cocaine?
Cocaine, also known as coke, blow, powder, or nose candy, is a stimulant drug. It is typically produced into a powder and can be snorted, smoked, or intravenously injected as a solution. Cocaine is typically created by synthesizing coca leaves, a natural plant from South America. In the early 1900s, the purified chemical, cocaine hydrochloride, was isolated from the plant for the first time. Cocaine is now sold as cocaine hydrochloride or it is diluted with other substances, such as cornstarch or talcum powder, or other drugs like amphetamines or caffeine.
In the U.S., cocaine is classified as a Schedule II drug, which means it has a high potential for misuse.
Difference Between Cocaine & Crack
Cocaine and crack differ in appearance as well as the way it is used. The powdered form of cocaine is typically known as cocaine or coke while the rock is often referred to as crack or crack cocaine. Cocaine in its powdered form is a hydrochloride salt; crack is cocaine combined with water and another substance, such as baking soda. After the cocaine and baking soda are mixed, it is boiled, and then solidifies. Once cooled, the substance is broken into smaller pieces and sold as crack. The name crack is derived from the crackling sound the drug produced when heated and smoked.
Cocaine Addiction Symptoms
Cocaine works on the brain very quickly, which means the effects are often much more pronounced. A person using cocaine may seem excited, more confident, and appear to lose their inhibitions. They may sleep and eat less. Dilated pupils are often a sign of cocaine use, as is a runny nose or nosebleeds. Some other signs of cocaine abuse are changes in appear and mental state.
Along with restlessness, a person may experience:
- Poor judgement
If a person has begun to inject cocaine or smoke, you may notice discarded syringes or pipes, or marks on their arms, legs, hands, or feet. Users smoking cocaine or crack may also leave for periods of 10 to 15 minutes to get high.
Cocaine can quickly produce a sense of extreme joy, which means when use is stopped, a crash follows almost immediately. During a crash, a user may have intense cravings for more cocaine. Many people tend to underestimate how addictive cocaine can be. However, the level of cravings produced by cocaine abuse can be as strong, if not stronger, than other drugs.
- Slow/delayed reaction times
- Vivid nightmares
- Increased appetite
- Difficulty concentrating
- Inability to feel pleasure
- Chills or tremors
- Muscle aches
- Suicidal thoughts or ideations
Over time, use of cocaine can become less and less pleasant with users often beginning to experience paranoia and fear.
Similar to withdrawal, the effects of cocaine may vary based on the length of use and the drug purity as much of the drug sold on the street often has varying ingredients. For those abusing cocaine, they may experience some of these effects for long periods of time before they receive cocaine addiction treatment.
Cocaine has a short-lived, intense high. As users sleep less and eat less, they may suffer from weight loss and intense fatigue when not using. A user’s heart rate may also increase and they may suffer from muscle spasms and convulsions. Cocaine can also increase the risk of heart attack, ischemic stroke, seizure, respiratory failure, and death.
As tolerance of the drug increases, an addict will begin to use more frequently and in larger doses. The long-term use of cocaine can lead to:
- Permanent damage to the heart and brain
- High blood pressure
- Liver damage
- Destruction of nasal septum or cavities
- Damage to the kidneys
- Severe tooth decay
- Sexual problems
- Mood disturbances
Long-term users may struggle with heart arrhythmia, headaches, ulcers, abdominal pain, and more. If a user injects the drug, they may also suffer from collapsed veins or allergic reactions.
Getting Cocaine Addiction Help
Cocaine addiction treatment will begin with a medically-supervised detox. Although Destination Hope does not offer detox, it can help connect you with a suitable detox facility so that you can begin cocaine rehab free of drugs.
At Destination Hope, our professionals will address both the addiction and any other underlying disorders, such as trauma or mental illness. Many behavioral treatments may be used in cocaine rehab, such as techniques for recognizing cravings and learning to recognize situations that may put a user at risk of relapsing. Clients may also engage in individual and family therapy sessions during cocaine addiction treatment.
As with all substance abuse, cocaine inhibits the brain from providing brain chemicals, such as serotonin and dopamine, from things like food, personal relationships, and sex. During treatment, you can once again learn to find joy in life and find the courage and strength to achieve sobriety.