Cocaine is a highly addictive stimulant that can result in an overdose with just one use. Or, it can lead to a lifelong addiction to the drug. Sadly, cocaine addiction remains a serious problem in the United States, affecting more than one million Americans and their loved ones. If you or someone you know is addicted to cocaine, don’t hesitate to contact Choices Recovery for help. With guidance from Choices’ addiction recovery experts and the aid of the rehab’s innovative treatment programs, you can develop the skills you need to overcome your cocaine addiction and finally begin on the path to recovery.
How is Cocaine Abused?
Cocaine is a powerful stimulant drug that is most often found in powdered form. It is known as “coke” or “blow,” or as a solidified, rock-like substance known as “crack cocaine.” Powdered coke is consumed by snorting it or dissolving the powder in water to be injected, Crack cocaine is used by heating the rock crystal in a pipe and inhaling the vapors this process produces. The most dangerous thing about cocaine is that a person can overdose on the first use or anytime thereafter. Obviously, there is no “safe” way to use the drug. A cocaine overdose occurs when the person uses too much of the drug. This causes a toxic reaction that can result in serious adverse health consequences or death.
How to Recognize a Cocaine Addict
Cocaine has become the drug of choice for individuals looking for a rush of pleasurable feelings, called a “high,” which is a result of changes in the way the brain functions. The intense euphoric feeling users get from cocaine occurs because the drug affects the central nervous system It increases levels of the neurotransmitter dopamine, which is responsible for regulating feelings of pleasure. Over time, cocaine abuse interrupts the natural process of dopamine production in the brain. It prevents the chemical from being recycled back into brain cells causing a build-up among nerve cells. As a result, users develop a tolerance to the drug, requiring more and more cocaine to produce those same feelings of euphoria. This possibly leads to a cocaine dependence and addiction. Some common signs of a cocaine addict include:
- Feelings of superiority
- Feelings of restlessness
- Withdrawal symptoms
Long-Term Cocaine Effects
Because the high associated with cocaine use only lasts for a short period of time, people abusing the drug often fall into a binge and crash pattern, where they repeatedly use cocaine to experience those euphoric feelings brought on by the drug, and to avoid the depression, exhaustion and other negative symptoms brought on by a crash. Sadly, frequent cocaine abuse can result in a cocaine addiction, which can have an adverse effect on the individual’s body, mood, and personal relationships. Some possible long-term cocaine effects may include:
- Increased blood pressure
- Cardiac arrest
- Brain damage
- Abdominal pain
- Chronic headaches
Contact Choices Recovery for Help
According to national statistics, 1.9 million people use cocaine each month, with the highest rate of use occurring among adults 18-25 years of age. Unfortunately, many users don’t realize that cocaine is highly addictive, and by the time they begin to experience adverse cocaine effects, they may already be addicted to the drug. If you or a loved one is facing an addiction to cocaine, the addiction recovery experts at Choices Recovery can help. The founder and CEO of Choices Recovery, Per Wickstrom, struggled with an addiction to cocaine and other drugs for more than 22 years before getting clean and is now committed to helping others do the same. Contact Choices Recovery today at our toll-free number to speak to a certified substance abuse counselor about your addiction.