Cocaine addiction


Cocaine Addiction Overview

Cocaine is a highly addictive and expensive substance, and frequent use can contribute to physical and mental dependence, termed the cocaine use disorder. Cocaine use is prevalent in the United States. It’s important to understand how Cocaine addiction works, the signs, the symptoms, and most importantly, the way out.


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How Common is Cocaine Abuse?

According to the National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA), over 1.3 million people in the US are combating cocaine use disorder. The healthcare sector is burdened by the rising epidemic of cocaine addiction, and these patients are denied quality care.
Substance abuse disorders contribute to imprisonment and potential homelessness, and cocaine users account for 54% of the drug-related incarcerations in federal prisons.

It is the third most commonly used addictive stimulant in the United States, and large quantities are smuggled into the country. Reports reveal that the authorities seized over 42,000 tons of cocaine attempting to enter the country from the Mexican border earlier in 2020.

What is Cocaine Addiction?

Cocaine can be consumed in many forms, such as snorting a powdery substance or burning and smoking the rock. It induces feelings of intense euphoria and gives the mind a temporary surge of unyielding energy.

Users feel unusually confident and able to put aside their fears and apprehensions, explaining the popularity of cocaine on Wall Street and other high-profile corporate districts.

This momentary surge of confidence and energy quickly becomes a habit, transforming into an addictive consumption pattern with grave consequences.

Cocaine induces the following effects:

  • Restlessness
  • Heightened sensitivity to light, sound, or touch
  • Energetic and confident
  • Irritability
  • Paranoia

Cocaine is one of the most dangerous and highly addictive substances, and frequent consumption has grave physical and mental health consequences.

The perils of cocaine use range from sleep disturbances and insomnia to organ failure and brain damage.

Regular cocaine use causes the blood vessels to constrict dangerously, resulting in haywire blood pressure levels and slow blood circulation. Snorting the substance runs the risk of damaging the septum or the nasal cavity.

What are the Signs of Cocaine Addiction?

Cocaine makes its users feel elated, confident, more alert, and able to channel their extroverted side to socialize better. It reduces the need to sleep, which triggers a vast host of complications because quality sleep is crucial for the body’s self-repair functions.

Here are the early signs of cocaine addiction or regular use:

  • The pupils become alarmingly dilated
  • High blood pressure levels
  • Feverishness
  • Faster heart rate
  • Signs of erratic behavior
  • Loss of appetite and cravings

The body and mind develop a dependence on any illicit substance, be it heroin or cocaine, demanding the user to continue using. Persistence use despite experiencing the symptoms mentioned above can lead to a cocaine use disorder.

The symptoms of a cocaine use disorder are as follows:

  • Changes in sleeping patterns
  • Insomnia
  • Inability to maintain a healthy hygiene
  • Repetitive lying to family and loved ones
  • Engaging in risk/deviant behaviors
  • Intense bouts of paranoia
  • Frequent mood swings
  • Being overly secretive
  • Lack of interest in hobbies and activities
  • Financial and legal challenges

Experts observe that people with cocaine use disorder experience frequent mood swings, fluctuating from manic euphoria to depression and irritability. If you notice these signs in your behavior or a loved one’s, it’s crucial to start exploring reputable rehabilitation facilities. Cocaine use disorder treatments are quite similar to alcohol abuse treatment programs, involving medically-assisted detoxification and 12-steps of self-change. We’ll discuss the treatments in more detail below.

What are The Effects of Cocaine Addiction?

Medical practitioners strongly advise against quitting a highly addictive substance like cocaine as the body develops a physical and mental dependence on addictive stimulants.

The effects of cocaine addiction are visible in every sphere of the user’s life, from physical and mental well-being to personal and professional lives.
Habitual users cannot monitor their hygiene, fulfill their domestic and professional obligations, or maintain healthy relationships.

Cocaine addiction is an expensive habit, and users are bound to encounter financial and legal challenges. Quitting is not an option for most patients with a history of regular use because cocaine withdrawal accompanies debilitating symptoms.

The signs of cocaine withdrawal include:

  • Uncontrollable cravings for the substance
  • Persistent fever
  • Irritability
  • Depression
  • Suicide ideation

The long-term effects of cocaine addiction can lead to brain damage, organ failure, respiratory infections and complete loss of smell.

Patients with cocaine use disorder experience recurrent nosebleeds, with a higher risk for asthma and infections, including HIV and pneumonia.

Research suggests that long-term cocaine use can damage the heart and heighten the risk factors of heart failure. Clinical studies have linked chronic cocaine use with myocardial damage, hypertension, and other risk factors for heart attacks.

Cocaine use also induces brain damage, making users vulnerable to multiple complications, including depression, suicide ideation, mood disturbances, and dementia.

What to Expect From Cocaine Addiction Treatment?

People combatting a cocaine use disorder or other substance use condition feel isolated, hopeless and caught in vicious patterns of abuse.

They cannot help themselves and feel abandoned by their loved ones. Going “cold turkey,” as patients are constantly told to “just quit” doesn’t help.

Cocaine use disorders must be treated at rehabilitation facilities by educated clinicians who understand addiction. The medical team initiates the treatment with a medically-assisted detox to help the patient overcome the physical urges for the substance.

Once the withdrawal symptoms subside, patients begin the recovery process which includes several different therapies.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is a popular and highly successful treatment for overcoming substance use addictions and cocaine use disorder by rationalizing one’s actions to adopt healthy behaviors. Rehabilitation facilities help patients overcome rough patches in their lives to build mindful attitudes toward their health and well-being.

Begin your Recovery Experience

How to Get Help for Cocaine addiction

Cornerstone Healing Center is an Arizona drug rehab that focuses on the holisitic healing of the mind, body, and spirit of a person. You can begin the process of recovery and get it right the first time. Call us today to learn about our inpatient rehab, intensive outpatient programs, and other ways we can help you combat cocaine addiction 


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