14 July 2017

What You Need to Know About Cocaine Addiction?
What You Need to Know About Cocaine Addiction?

Many people would never dream of taking an illegal drug such as cocaine, but there are some who regularly take this substance for recreational purposes. Cocaine is known as a party drug and those who take it report feeling euphoric, alert, and confident. However, the effects of cocaine do not last for very long and are usually followed by a crashing comedown. It is not uncommon for users to take more of the drug when the effects begin to wear off. Some will continue taking cocaine on a night out until they completely run out of the substance. Taking copious amounts of this drug can lead to overdose, but it can also quickly lead to a physical dependence and an addiction that rapidly spirals out of control. Knowing the risks often does not prevent individuals from experimenting with cocaine. The trouble is that most people assume they will not get hooked. They believe that they will be able to try it once and that will be it. Unfortunately, cocaine addiction can occur quite quickly. This article aims to inform readers what cocaine addiction is like.

What Are the Effects of Cocaine?

As previously mentioned, cocaine makes users feel great – temporarily. The effects of the drug last for around twenty to thirty minutes when it is snorted. Those who smoke crack cocaine will notice the effects subside after around ten minutes. Other side effects of the drug include raised body temperature and rapid heartbeat. Those who take it tend to stay awake for prolonged periods and their appetites will reduce.

However, as the drug wears off, the user may be left feeling very down and might suffer bouts of depression. It is common for those who have taken cocaine to feel as though they have symptoms similar to the flu the following day. Some individuals experience this crashing comedown for many days after taking the drug.

As you might imagine, the temptation to take cocaine once more to relieve the after-effects is very strong. Cocaine is an intensely powerful drug and users typically experience powerful cravings when not using.

When taking the drug, not all side effects are pleasant. Some people, particularly long-term users, may become over-confident and aggressive while others will experience feelings of paranoia. These emotions can make users take unnecessary risks that put them in danger.

There are several long-term side effects of cocaine use as well. The more of the drug the person takes, the more likely that he or she is to build up a tolerance to the effects. This means that the individual will need to take more of the substance to achieve the effects he or she desires. When this happens, the person is likely to develop a crippling addiction that will inevitably lead to daily use.

Prolonged daily use of cocaine often leads to a dramatic loss of appetite and sleep deprivation, which in turn can result in malnutrition and psychosis. Chronic depression is common among long-term users of cocaine, and many will do almost anything to get their hands on the drug upon becoming physically dependent on it. Other long-term effects of a cocaine addiction include:

  • damage to blood vessels in the brain and heart
  • liver damage
  • kidney damage
  • lung damage
  • high blood pressure
  • strokes
  • heart failure
  • respiratory failure
  • severe weight loss
  • severe tooth decay
  • reproductive problems
  • chronic depression
  • exhaustion

What Makes Cocaine So Addictive?

Cocaine is known as one of the most addictive drugs and the reason for this is the effect it has on the brain. It stimulates the main pleasure centre in the brain, which results in intense feelings of pleasure in the affected individual. The temptation to take more cocaine when the effects begin to wear off means that the person often builds up a tolerance quite quickly.

Once a tolerance has developed, the user will find it extremely difficult to achieve the same high that he or she experienced the first time taking the drug. He or she will therefore be tempted to chase this high and continue taking more of the substance. When this happens, addiction typically follows.

Cocaine addiction is one of the most difficult addictions to break free from because the temptation to take the drug is so strong. Powerful cravings occur sometimes weeks or months after the person has stopped taking the drug, and these cravings can be so intense that the affected individual cannot resist the temptation to take again.

Is It Possible to Overcome a Cocaine Addiction?

It is entirely possible to overcome a cocaine addiction, but it will not be easy. The main reason for this is that detoxification, which is usually the first step in the treatment process, can be a complicated matter. The fact that so many cocaine users tend to use other substances with it, such as alcohol or sedative drugs, makes it more complex.

When it comes to detoxing from cocaine, the user will have to quit all substances and the detox will need to be managed accordingly. A cocaine detox tends to begin around nine hours after the patient has quit the drug.

As you might imagine, deep depression occurs when the drug is stopped, with the patient feeling agitated, and unhappy. A loss of appetite is also common and cravings will continue for several days. In the following days, it is common for the patient to experience fatigue, with an inability to sleep. There may be a subsidence of cravings after around three to four days, at which time the patient will finally be able to get some sleep.

Nevertheless, cravings will return, and after several weeks, they may become quite strong once more. It is often at this point that individuals return to the drug. Staying away from it is essential when it comes to overcoming the addiction. For most people, it will be necessary to have plenty of support throughout the detox and rehabilitation stages to recover fully.

Rehabilitation for a Cocaine Addiction

As cocaine addiction is notoriously difficult to treat due to the powerful cravings that could continue for some time after detox, it is wise to consider the choice of rehab programme carefully. Choosing a clinic with experience and a record of success in terms of helping others to beat this illness is key.

Here at UKAT, we have a number of clinics across the UK that specialise in all types of addiction recovery, including cocaine addiction. We believe that most people with a cocaine addiction would benefit from an inpatient programme that will remove them from the temptations and triggers found in their everyday life.

Our clinics are quiet and tranquil and are free from distraction. Patients will be given a tailored plan of care that has been designed around their own specific needs. We know that this is the best way to ensure a long-term successful recovery.

If you would like more information on what cocaine addiction is like, on our clinics, or on our treatment programmes, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us today.

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