Cocaine Addiction Symptoms and Rehab Programs in the OC
Cocaine is a potent stimulant exerting a powerful pull on users.
Taking cocaine regularly can trigger changes in the chemical structure of your brain, and addiction can very easily sneak up on you.
Maybe you’re starting to question your own cocaine usage. Perhaps you suspect a loved one is dependent on the drug. Either way, familiarizing yourself with the common markers of addiction could help prevent a tragic outcome.
Fortunately, getting effective cocaine addiction treatment is not as difficult or expensive as you might imagine. If you’re trying to give up cocaine, you normally won’t need a medically-assisted detox, and withdrawal is seldom life-threatening. Beyond this, cocaine withdrawal doesn’t bring about marked physical symptoms, although you can expect a range of psychological withdrawal symptoms.
That said, most people addicted to cocaine benefit from some form of addiction treatment, typically therapy or counseling, and possibly a 12-step program. Treatment can help you to manage withdrawal symptoms effectively while better resisting cravings and restricting your life so it’s substance-free.
Why is coke so addictive, then, if it doesn’t produce any physical withdrawal symptoms?
Why Is Cocaine So Addictive?
Cocaine is a white powder that’s usually snorted using a straw or rolled-up bill. The substance can also be injected or smoked.
The smokable form of cocaine is known as crack. This comes in yellow-ish, off-white rocks.
Whatever the method of delivery, cocaine delivers an intense but fleeting high. Once ingested, you’ll experience a brief state of extreme euphoria. As this fades, you’ll crave more of the drug so you can recreate the powerful high. The effects diminish within 30 minutes or so. With crack, you’ll feel the effects almost instantly as the drug barrels into your bloodstream, and the high wears off even more rapidly than with powdered cocaine.
You experience a cocaine high as your brain becomes flooded with dopamine, a feel-good chemical neurotransmitter in the brain. Once the cocaine binge is over, your brain struggles to produce dopamine in regular quantities. It’s grown to rely on cocaine as the stimulus. This explains why many cocaine addicts seem to take maintenance doses of the drug simply to feel normal.
Before we move on to show you how to get help for cocaine addiction treatment, we’ll summarize the most common signs and symptoms of cocaine addiction.
Symptoms of Cocaine Addiction
As with all drugs, the signs and symptoms of cocaine addiction vary.
Nevertheless, you can keep your eyes peeled for the following common signifiers that cocaine use has descended into cocaine addiction.
- Physical Symptoms of Cocaine Addiction
- Psychological Symptoms of Cocaine Addiction
- Behavioral Symptoms of Cocaine Addiction
Physical Symptoms of Cocaine Addiction
- High energy levels
- Diminished appetite
- Pronounced weight loss
- Persistent nosebleeds
- Runny nose
- Increased body temperature
- Dilated pupils
- Excessive sweating
- Blacking out
- Tolerance to cocaine
- Liver damage
- Kidney damage
- Breathing problems
- Cognitive impairment
- Heart attack
Psychological Symptoms of Cocaine Addiction
- Impaired decision-making
- Excessive confidence
- Mood swings
- Fleeting euphoria
Behavioral Symptoms of Cocaine Addiction
- Engaging in reckless behaviors
- Inability to curtail cocaine use
- Dishonesty regarding activities
- Impulsive behavior
- Trying to borrow money
- Stealing money
- Excessive porn viewing
- Engaging with escorts
- Talking excessively
- Disproportionate time spent on cocaine
- Losing interest in hobbies or interests
- Withdrawing from friends and family
- Socializing with new friends who use cocaine
- Neglecting responsibilities
- Using other drugs alongside cocaine
- Continuing to use cocaine despite these negative outcomes
Forms of Cocaine Abuse
Cocaine users will typically snort, smoke, or inject the drug. The high lasts from 5 to 30 minutes, depending on how you use the drug, and how quickly it’s absorbed into your bloodstream.
Smoking crack cocaine sends cocaine most rapidly into your brain. The second-quickest method of delivery is injection, followed by snorting the drug.
Of all these delivery methods, smoking cocaine is by far the most popular. Based on 2013 data, 68% of those seeking treatment for cocaine addiction smoked crack. They also typically use other drugs.
Regardless of how you consume cocaine, it leaves your body quickly, encouraging a binge pattern of cocaine abuse, a sharp crash, and further cocaine abuse. It’s a vicious cycle. This also means cocaine can trigger dependence rapidly, both physical and psychological.
Cocaine vs Crack
While cocaine and crack are fundamentally similar, crack use leads to a heightened risk of tolerance, as well as dependence and addiction. This is due largely to the fast-acting high meaning that crack users typically take the drug more frequently than users of non-freebased cocaine.
If you or a loved is using crack, the symptoms are similar to those of cocaine use. Extreme euphoria, alertness, and energy will be accompanied by a decreased appetite, dilated pupils, and strong cravings for crack.
The speed with which crack enters your lungs and bloodstream also increases the risk of overdose.
Long-Term Effects of Untreated Cocaine Addiction
What happens if you allow a cocaine addiction to go untreated, then?
Well, you’re liable to experience an unpleasant laundry list of long-term consequences, including any or all of the following:
Breakdown of relationships
Job loss and unemployment
Heightened risk of co-occurring mental health conditions
Permanent brain damage
Cocaine Addiction Treatment
The days of cocaine being the preserve of the elite are history. According to data from NIDA (National Institute on Drug Abuse), more than 10% of rehab admissions are for the purposes of treating cocaine addiction.
The National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) shows that roughly 1.5 million Americans currently use cocaine. Of these, more than 900,000 exhibit the criteria for cocaine use or dependence as laid down in DSM-V.
Unfortunately, and as with most substance use disorders, many of these people don’t seek treatment. It’s impossible to get hard data here, so how about those who choose to engage in cocaine addiction treatment?
Cocaine Addiction Treatment Success Rates
While cocaine addiction treatment can be highly effective, many cocaine users relapse. Around 25% of those who pursue treatment relapse during the first year.
The way in which the drug impacts the central nervous system as well as the brain means it’s devilishly addictive, even when you think you’ve consigned it to the rear-vision mirror.
New Treatments for Cocaine Addiction
There are currently no FDA-approved medications for treating cocaine addiction.
Several medications are undergoing clinical trials to establish their efficacy along with any potential dangers. Of these, disulfiram shows the most promise. This is typically used for treating alcohol use disorder.
Luckily, our cocaine rehab program in OC can help you set the powder or rock aside and reclaim your old life.
Cocaine Addiction Treatment at Renaissance Recovery Center
Here at Renaissance Recovery Center, we understand the challenges and roadblocks to expect when treating cocaine addiction. We are also adequately positioned to help you overcome these obstacles.
Unlike other drugs such as opioids, there are no medications administered to counter withdrawal symptoms. Instead, your therapist will help you deal with these head-on while resisting any cravings that could lead to relapse.
Crucially, you’ll also have the opportunity to address any co-occurring mental health disorders. Our dual-diagnosis cocaine addiction treatment program delivers treatments for both issues simultaneously.
Invest in yourself and the best cocaine addiction treatment in OC by calling us today at 866.330.9449