Cocaine Detox

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What is Cocaine Detox?

Cocaine is a strong stimulant that is created using the leaves of the coca plant found in South America. As a drug, cocaine appears as a white powder that dealers often cut with other drugs like amphetamines in order to increase profits. Cocaine can be ingested in a few different ways and is typically smoked, snorted, rubbed onto the gums, or injected into the bloodstream. Cocaine has a multitude of different effects on the mind and body. After using cocaine once, a craving for the substance may begin. After repeated use, the body becomes accustomed to having cocaine present, and without it, the body will begin to experience different negative side effects, often called withdrawal symptoms. Once a person has withdrawal symptoms and a constant craving for the drug, they are considered dependent on cocaine. Getting help for that dependence through a detoxification program is one of the safest, most successful ways to fight addiction and become sober. 

The Effects of Cocaine Abuse on the Body

Cocaine affects the mind and body in different ways. The brain is affected by cocaine because the drug increases the amount of dopamine, a reward chemical found within the brain. This reinforces drug-taking behaviors because cocaine makes the brain release dopamine, making the user feel good. As drug use continues, the brain becomes less sensitive to cocaine and creates less dopamine. In turn, users must ingest more of the drug in order to feel the same effects. 

Cocaine makes users feel energized, happy, and alert. However, it can also cause feelings of paranoia, irritability, and sensitivity to light, sound, and touch. Consuming large amounts of cocaine can lead to unpredictable behavior. 

Over time, cocaine use can cause nausea, high blood pressure, tremors or twitches, restlessness, increased heartbeat, and a number of other issues depending on the method of ingestion. 

What are the Symptoms of Cocaine Detox?

Once someone determines they have an addiction to a drug like cocaine, they may attempt to stop using that drug on their own. However, when they stop the use of the drug, they will experience a variety of different negative symptoms, as their body is no longer getting a substance it had acclimated to receiving. These are known as withdrawal symptoms. Withdrawal symptoms can be both physical and psychological in nature and can range greatly in severity. Encountering withdrawal symptoms can strongly discourage a person from getting sober. Therefore, the assistance of programs like detox and inpatient treatment is necessary. 

Acute Withdrawal

During acute withdrawal, clients will begin to feel some uncomfortable symptoms as a result of the drug leaving their bodies. Acute symptoms can be both physical and psychological in nature and begin quickly after stopping cocaine use. Physical symptoms of cocaine withdrawal include fatigue, restlessness, tremors, aches and pains, and chills. Symptoms will depend on the length of time a person has been using cocaine. Psychological symptoms of cocaine withdrawal include feeling a lack of pleasure, anxiety and depression, nightmares, paranoia, agitation, and irritability. 

Early Abstinence 

After the acute withdrawal phase of detoxification is over, most of the physical symptoms of cocaine withdrawal will stop. Psychological symptoms may continue, and clients may begin experiencing cravings for the drug. These cravings can be very difficult to cope with, especially without support, which is what makes attending a detoxification program so important. There is a high chance of relapse during this phase of treatment, making supervision important, and this phase may last longer than the acute withdrawal stage. 

Protracted Abstinence 

People in the protracted abstinence stage of treatment often report feeling more clear-headed. They are able to recognize triggers more appropriately, and their cravings are more sporadic in nature. During this phase, clients are able to focus completely on their treatment and learn many different valuable skills that will help them to maintain their sobriety even after leaving the treatment program. The detox process works differently for everyone, and the amount of time a person can plan to spend detoxing from cocaine will depend on their history with the drug. 

How Long Will It Take to Detox from Cocaine?

The amount of time a person will spend detoxing from cocaine will depend on the length of time they have spent taking the drug. A person who has used cocaine once or twice will have a significantly easier time detoxing than someone who has been addicted to cocaine for years. Withdrawal can last anywhere from a few days to a few months, depending on the person and their relationship to the drug. This is part of what makes the intake process so important when it comes to determining a treatment plan. 

How to Recognize If Cocaine Detox May Be Right for You

If you find yourself dependent on cocaine, there is a good chance you have already developed an addiction. After an addiction forms, stopping the use of cocaine on your own can be near impossible. Getting help for your addiction is the best way to find lasting sobriety in a safe and healthy manner. 

What are the Different Types of Detox?

The most common forms of detox are inpatient and outpatient. Inpatient programs require clients to remain on the treatment center campus while they go through the detoxification program. Outpatient programs are only recommended for those who have very mild instances of dependence. Inpatient programs are the most intensive form of treatment available for those who find themselves addicted to cocaine. 

Medically assisted programs provide clients with round-the-clock medical supervision during their treatment. Doctors on staff are able to help clients through their withdrawal symptoms by prescribing medications to lessen symptoms. 

Holistic detoxification programs are designed to help clients heal their minds and body simultaneously and often offer a variety of different therapies. 

Getting Help and Cocaine Detox

Making a choice to get help for an addiction is never easy, but treatment for cocaine addiction can truly save your life. Drugs like cocaine do have the potential for overdose, making them incredibly dangerous. Treatment centers are designed to assist clients throughout their treatment, granting them a brand-new start. Attending treatment is a great decision for anyone who is struggling with addiction. Getting help is possible, and we’re here to offer it at First Steps Recovery. 

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