Withdrawal from cocaine can be a very intense process that involves professional support and treatment. At Visions Adolescent Care Centers, we are prepared to help teens through the withdrawal and treatment process, getting them on a healthy path to recovery. With many programs available, patients can choose the treatment options that work best for them. To learn more, contact Visions Adolescent Treatment Centers at 866-889-3665.

Learn About Cocaine

Cocaine is a stimulant drug derived from the leaves of the South American coca plant. It is typically snorted through the nose or dissolved in water so it can be injected into the bloodstream. Cocaine increases dopamine levels in the brain, which in turn produces a state of euphoria or a “high,” making this drug highly addictive.

In 2014, 4.6 percent of 12th graders admitted to using cocaine at some point in their lives, according to statistics from the National Institute on Drug Abuse. The agency also found that 2.6 percent of 12th graders used the substance within the past year. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) found that people between the ages of 18 and 25 were more than twice as likely to use cocaine as other adults.

Cocaine’s Effect on the Body

In addition to the changes cocaine makes on the brain to increase dopamine levels, the drug can affect the body in these ways:

  • Increased body temperature, heart rate and blood pressure
  • Constricted blood vessels
  • Dilated pupils
  • Abdominal pain and nausea
  • Decreased appetite, weight loss and eventual malnourishment
  • Heart attack, stroke and death

While the initial effects of cocaine include increased energy and euphoria, chronic use can lead to paranoia, confusion and sexual dysfunction.

Effects & Symptoms of Cocaine Addiction

There are different factors that contribute to the addictive nature of cocaine. First, the high from the drug does not last long, prompting users to continue using to maintain those euphoric sensations. Users can build up a tolerance to the drug, which means it take larger amounts to get the same effects over time. Uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms can also lead people to continue taking the drug even if they want to stop.

Symptoms of cocaine addiction might include:

  • Anxiety, panic and fearfulness
  • Confusion and decreased ability to concentrate
  • Cravings and tolerance, leading to more drug taken
  • Inability to quit, even if desire to quit is there
  • More time spent getting, taking and recovering from the drug
  • Loss of social filters, leading to relationship problems
  • Withdrawal from family, friends and activities
  • Continued use despite problems caused by drug use

Cocaine Withdrawal

If a person that is addicted to cocaine tries to stop taking the drug, serious withdrawal symptom can occur:

  • Fatigue, difficulty sleeping, bad dreams
  • Nervousness and paranoia
  • Depression and inability to feel pleasure
  • Body aches, chills and pain
  • Intense cravings for cocaine