For those facing an addiction to one of the most addictive drugs in the world, cocaine rehab offers a path out of a very vicious cycle. When you struggle with cocaine addiction, your world grows smaller every day. Something that started as a recreational activity suddenly dominates every area of your life. Using cocaine becomes all you think about and do.
Once you become addicted to cocaine, it takes control over your life. You no longer have control over what you think or how you act. Your drug use makes all of your decisions for you. It might leave you feeling lonely and lost. But you are neither of these things!
The Glamorous Side of Cocaine
Cocaine has earned a reputation over the years as the ideal pop culture party drug. Celebrities and sports stars are often in the news for their use of cocaine, overdoses, and sometimes deaths. Cocaine is a more expensive drug that many of us associate with living a luxury lifestyle. Sometimes these celebrities seem more worried about hiding their time undergoing cocaine rehab than they are in keeping the world from seeing the negative impact the drug has on their lives. Today’s youth is especially enamored with the drug they think of as a status symbol. But don’t be fooled by its glamorous reputation. Cocaine is actually one of the oldest and deadliest drugs.
Cocaine as a Street Drug
For centuries, the Incas in the Andes chewed coca leaves for the effect it had on their health and behavior. Today, coca tea is widely consumed in Peru and Bolivia and is used as a natural treatment for preventing altitude sickness. A German chemist named Albert Niemann first isolated cocaine from the plant in the mid-1880s, introducing the drug to the medical community.
The leaves from which cocaine is extracted come from the Erythroxylon coca Lam, a tropical shrub that grows on the Andean Ridge in South America. Cocaine is a hydrochloride salt with a structure similar to atropine and hyoscine. Both the hydrochloride salt and base forms are white powders. Each coca leaf contains up to 1% cocaine. After moistening the leaves of the plant with an alkaline substance, the cocaine is extracted using kerosene
Later, Sigmund Freud used the drug himself before promoting it as a cure for depression and sexual impotence. Freud promoted cocaine to his close friends all the while maintaining the belief that it had no lethal dose for humans. It grew popular as a recreational drug over time. Its use as a pharmaceutical began in the early 1860s. During the early 1900s, experts began to recognize cocaine’s potential for damage and made it illegal.
Today, cocaine is classified as a Schedule II drug, meaning it has a high potential for abuse. Doctors can still administer cocaine for some legitimate medical uses such as local anesthesia. The street drug that people buy for recreational use appears as a fine, white, crystalline powder. Like any street drug, it is made and sold without regulation.
The process for making cocaine is long and complex. Each party along the way often adds something to the drug to increase their profits. That’s why it is virtually impossible to buy pure cocaine. The pure product is usually murky brown, not the glistening white color you usually see. It also has a bitter chemical smell.
Dealers who make and sell cocaine often cut it with substances like talcum, cornstarch, baking soda, or flour. Each person involved in the process wants to increase their profit. Often, the cocaine smells like the additives it contains. A practice that’s makes buying cocaine on the street even more dangerous is cutting it with other drugs. Sometimes the dealers use procaine or amphetamines. When they combine the cocaine with heroin, it’s called a speedball. Cutting cocaine with other drugs that are more addictive makes using cocaine more addictive too. It could also cause drug interactions, allergic reactions, or side effects that you don’t expect. The stimulating effects of cocaine are well known. If you don’t know the composition of the drug, there’s no way to predict what effects it will have.
Street cocaine has a lot of names including snow, blow, powder, coke, and “C”. People use it in two different forms including water-soluble hydrochloride salt and water-insoluble cocaine base. The latter is also known as freebase. The hydrochloride salt is a white powder that users either inject, snort, smoke, swallow, or rub on their gums. The process of combining the cocaine with ammonia, baking soda, and water over heat results in cocaine base, or freebase. This process produces the rock form of cocaine called “crack.” The name comes from the crackling noise it makes when smoked. This is the most potent form of cocaine sold today. A person can become addicted after using crack cocaine one time.
Crack cocaine is a strong stimulant that affects the central nervous system. It causes excessive amounts of dopamine in the brain. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that causes you to feel pleasure and make movements. A single use of crack cocaine can trigger the brain’s reward system to the degree that the person never wants to stop using the drug. The same properties that make cocaine highly addictive also cause severe withdrawal symptoms when you try to stop using it. Users often continue using the drug instead of going through cocaine rehab to avoid the severe symptoms of withdrawal. These symptoms include depression, extreme fatigue, irritability, anxiety, intense cravings, and sometimes psychosis.
Cocaine Addiction Stats
The National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) is a major source of statistical information on the illicit use of cocaine. Statistics show the serious threat of cocaine addiction and the level of dependence in this country.
– Each year, between 5,000 and 6,000 unintentional deaths in the U.S. involve the use of cocaine
– In 2011, approximately 505,000 of the 1.3 million emergency room visits in this country were related to misuse of cocaine
– In 2015, between 18% and 23% of 12th graders admitted to having used cocaine
– 17% of all the people who try cocaine develop a dependency
– Between 50 and 90 percent of people addicted to cocaine experience a relapse when attempting to detox without professional help
(H2) Cocaine FAQs
How addictive is cocaine?
Cocaine is considered highly addictive and is one of the most habit-forming substances on the planet. As soon as you use cocaine, it begins to stimulate the brain’s reward center, increasing the production of dopamine. The chemistry of the brain’s reward center is immediately altered. The euphoric state it causes makes the person want to experience it again. The drug causes a wide range of potential short-term effects, including:
- Increase in blood pressure and heart rate
- Extreme restlessness
- Intense feelings of euphoria
- Aggressive, paranoid behavior
- Intense cravings for the drug
- Anxiety and paranoia
- Sudden death – the most dangerous effect of cocaine is its ability to cause an overdose and/or death after a single use
How do I know if someone is on cocaine?
Different people exhibit a variety of signs when they are high on cocaine. One person might be talkative, energetic, and more confident than usual. Another might have problems sleeping, including problems going and staying asleep. Others start eating less due to a reduced appetite, have symptoms or paranoia, or become more aggressive. Cocaine abuse can also lead to delusional thoughts and hallucinations. You must be aware of all the potential effects of cocaine abuse to recognize them in someone else’s behavior.
How long does cocaine stay in your system?
The effects of cocaine occur shortly after taking it, but they don’t last very long. It depends on the method of use. Both smoking and injecting cocaine yield effects that usually last between 15 and 20 minutes. Snorting it produces longer-lasting results of about 45 to 90 minutes while oral use usually lasts for about 90 minutes. The liver metabolizes cocaine, breaking it down into smaller compounds, or metabolites. The primary metabolite produced from cocaine is benzoylecgonine. This is the compound present in urine that shows up in a drug test. It is present for days after the cocaine itself is gone. It usually lasts for several days in urine. Heavy users often have it in their urine for as long as two weeks.
The method of use also plays a role in how cocaine is metabolized. When injected, it goes into the bloodstream and gets distributed throughout the body. Snorting cocaine allows large amounts of the drug to instantly enter the bloodstream. Smoking freebase delivers cocaine to your lungs within seconds.
Can cocaine cause anxiety?
Cocaine is a strong stimulant that increases the brain’s activity and increases energy levels. You might experience racing, uncontrollable thoughts. Some of these thoughts lead to paranoia or have a negative impact. Dependency on the drug can also cause a person to become anxious when they try to go without it. Anxiety is one of the most common symptoms of cocaine withdrawal. This is one reason that you should always undergo detox from cocaine in a cocaine rehab center.
The feelings of restlessness, insomnia, nausea, and dizziness sometimes caused by cocaine are also related to anxiety. It causes anxiety in some users more than others. Some people experience cocaine anxiety attacks, especially when coming down from a high.
Can you mix cocaine with alcohol?
Mixing cocaine with alcohol means mixing a stimulant with a depressant. Both drugs cause changes in behavior, mood, and mindset. Each competes to take a different effect on the body. The conflict results in a range of long-term and short-term side effects including:
- Breathing problems
- Cognitive impairment
- High blood pressure
- Heart palpitations
- Increased heart rate
- Loss of coordination
- Death of blood vessels and tissue
- Brain damage
Taking cocaine with alcohol results in the metabolism of a substance called “cocaethylene” in the liver. It enhances the highs produced by both drugs. In addition to causing aggressive and violent behavior, it also causes long-term liver damage and possible sudden death. Research has also shown an increase in suicide rates among users who combined the two substances.
Signs of Cocaine Abuse
Some of the signs and symptoms that a loved one is abusing cocaine include:
- Emotional Swings
- Short Attention Span
- Loss of Appetite
Remember, every person doesn’t exhibit the same behaviors. It depends on several factors including the method of use, frequency, and the individual.
Effects of Cocaine Abuse
Cocaine works on the brain quickly, resulting in intense effects almost immediately after use. The drug causes instant euphoria, increases in energy levels, and may make you feel less hungry and sleepy. Soon after using cocaine, you might feel irritable, paranoid, and restless. It can also result in fast feelings of panic.
Cocaine also causes long-term effects that can affect your health and your life. Heart arrhythmia, headache, ulcers, nausea, and abdominal pains are fairly common. Using cocaine over a long time period can also increase your risk of having a cocaine overdose.
Signs of a Cocaine Overdose
Some of the signs of a cocaine overdose are serious and even life-threatening. They include…
– damage to the kidney
– ischemic stroke
– heart attack
– heart failure
– cerebral hemorrhage
– lifelong brain damage
Cocaine Addiction Treatment
If you have a cocaine addiction, you probably need more of the drug to achieve the same feeling of euphoria. Once you become dependent, the only way to safely stop using it is with a professional cocaine rehab program.
Cocaine Detox Process
Medically-assisted treatment is one of the most effective tools for treating cocaine addiction. It relies on drugs that reduce dangerous and painful withdrawal symptoms and make it easier to overcome cocaine cravings.
Cocaine treatment consists of four stages:
- Medically Managed Withdrawal
The rehab center will evaluate your addiction and determine the best treatment plan for you. Every addiction treatment begins with detox to remove all of the substance from your system. Cocaine rehab centers also use cognitive behavioral therapy and other therapies to help you understand your addiction and change your behaviors.
Maintenance is one stage of the treatment program that never ends. Medically managed withdrawal can help you overcome cravings and prevent relapse during the long-term. Going through a cocaine rehab program teaches you the techniques you need to live well without relying on cocaine. One way that you can gain support during therapy is from support groups. They offer guidance and support to prevent you from going back to using cocaine once you complete your recovery. Ongoing recovery is one of the most important components of a successful cocaine rehab program.
Why Choose Satori
Satori Recovery is the preferred choice for cocaine addiction treatment. They offer medically-assisted treatment to make the painful withdrawal from cocaine more comfortable and safer. Guests receive 24/7 medical supervision to ensure they don’t have any unexpected complications.
Satori also offers a range of therapies including individual, group therapy, and cognitive behavioral therapy for a comprehensive approach to cocaine abuse treatment.
The highly addictive properties of cocaine lead many people to cocaine addiction and abuse. The longer you wait for treatment, the greater the risks for overdose and many of the negative effects caused by the drug. Contact Satori Recovery and take the first step towards breaking free from your cocaine addiction.