At Chapters Recovery Center, our cocaine rehab center in New England can help you overcome cocaine addiction. If you or someone you love is struggling with cocaine addiction, our Massachusetts cocaine addiction treatment can give you the tools you need to live drug-free.
What is Cocaine?
Cocaine is a powerful stimulant that many people use as a party drug. It is derived from the coca plant, a plant from South America. Cocaine is highly addictive and, when people use cocaine frequently and regularly, stopping produces cocaine withdrawal effects. These effects often lead to prolonged use to alleviate the symptoms associated with cocaine withdrawal.
In appearance, cocaine is a white powdery substance. It can resemble talcum powder or flour. However, the powder is not guaranteed to only be composed of cocaine. Often, other drugs are mixed into cocaine powder. This increases a dealer’s profits and allows them to sell more cocaine. The different substances added to cocaine include flour, baking soda, and cornstarch.
Concerningly, some people also add other drugs to the cocaine they sell. You may think that you are using pure cocaine. However, the drug may be laced with other drugs such as methamphetamines.
Crack cocaine is a stimulant drug that is derived from the powdered form of cocaine. It is produced when powdered cocaine is dissolved in a combination of water and ammonia or sodium bicarbonate (baking soda).
The concoction is then boiled until a solid substance develops. The solid substance is then removed from the liquid and dried. Finally, the solid is broken into smaller rocks that are sold as crack cocaine.
Signs of Cocaine Addiction
If you are wondering whether you or someone close to you has a cocaine addiction, there are warning signs to look out for. Besides witnessing someone actively taking cocaine, there are behavioral, psychological, and physical signs that can occur. Some of the common signs that occur due to cocaine abuse include the following:
- Thinking about buying or doing cocaine a lot of the time
- Feelings of anxiety when thinking of stopping cocaine use
- Missing social events or work due to cocaine use
- Experiencing cocaine withdrawal symptoms when stopping use
- Spending a lot of money on cocaine
- Borrowing or stealing money to buy cocaine
- Craving cocaine when you’re not using it
Experiencing these signs or witnessing them in another person could point to cocaine addiction. Luckily, there is help available. Here at Chapter’s Recovery, we offer substance abuse treatment for individuals with cocaine addiction.
The Effects of Cocaine on Your Body
Cocaine is a central nervous system stimulant that releases high dopamine levels, giving you an extremely pleasurable effect. Dopamine is known as the brain’s “feel-good” chemical. This euphoric rush is part of what makes cocaine highly addictive.
Additionally, this drug often makes users hyper-aware and talkative. Moreover, many people report feeling very energetic for short periods when on cocaine. As with any intense high, the crash is just as severe and will lead many to abuse cocaine to maintain that high, even to the detriment of their health.
The length of the high depends on how you ingest cocaine. Snorting gives you a quick, intense high that lasts 15–30 minutes. However, injecting or smoking cocaine creates a more intense high but only lasts 5–10 minutes. More overdose deaths happen through injection over snorting.
The Effects of Cocaine on the Brain
Research has shown that cocaine can alter your brain cells, particularly, the dopamine receptors and transmitters. While using cocaine, your body is getting dopamine-like chemicals from an external source. Therefore, the newly formed cells can have fewer dopamine receptors along the cell walls. Subsequently, cocaine’s effects on your brain chemistry make it harder for you to feel happy without cocaine.
The psychological effects of cocaine abuse can be life-altering and, in some cases, life-threatening. This is why it is important to seek help from a cocaine addiction rehab program. Professional treatment for cocaine addiction can help people fully break free from this highly addictive drug.
Short and Long-Term Effects of Cocaine Abuse
As with other substances, cocaine misuse comes with both short and long-term effects. The effects a person feels immediately are the short-term effects. These usually occur immediately during use. When cocaine enters the body, the following effects can occur:
- Dilated pupils
- Feelings of violence
- Muscle twitches or spasms
- Increased heart rate
- Irritability and paranoia
- Increased blood pressure
- Constricted blood vessels
- Fever or increased body temperature
- Sensitivity to touch, light, or sound
- Bizarre or erratic behavior
Some of the short-term effects of cocaine are highly concerning as they can lead to serious and immediate health issues. With cocaine abuse comes a risk of seizures or heart attack. These serious health effects can happen immediately after taking the drug.
Cocaine addiction also produces longer-term effects, which may worsen over time. Similar to the short-term effects, the long-term effects of cocaine abuse are physiological. Subsequently, this means they affect both the mind and body. Chronic abuse of cocaine over a long period of time can produce the following side effects in a person with a cocaine use disorder:
- Panic attacks
- Worsening of a mental illness
- Withdrawal symptoms (if drug use is discontinued)
- A tolerance increase that leads to more frequent cocaine use
- Sensitization to the effects of cocaine
- Psychosis and related symptoms (hallucinations, loss of touch with reality)
Over time, these effects become more pronounced in an individual abusing cocaine. Some people try to offset these effects by using more cocaine. This is especially true for people trying to stop the symptoms associated with cocaine withdrawal. However, this usually leads to a worsening of symptoms. Further, increased use can lead to toxic amounts of cocaine in the body which can lead to death.
Cocaine Withdrawal Symptoms
Even after just one time, using cocaine can create a strong desire to use more. It starts once in a while with a slight desire to try it again to needing it several times a day to function normally. When a person tries to stop using this drug, they begin to experience withdrawal symptoms. In many cases, the desire for relief will force many to give in after just a few hours. Cocaine withdrawal symptoms may include:
- Restless behavior
- Depressed mood
- A general feeling of discomfort
- Increased appetite
- Vivid and unpleasant dreams
After ceasing heavy use, cocaine symptoms can persist for a long time. Additionally, cocaine withdrawal is not associated with intense physical symptoms. However, the psychological symptoms of withdrawal are very powerful. Many people who stop using cocaine report that cravings persisted for months after they stopped using. This is why substance abuse treatment is so essential to both combat withdrawal and the urge to use again.
Cocaine Addiction Treatment Programs
Individuals who are suffering from cocaine addiction should seek professional help right away. Fortunately, through medical rehabilitation, there is hope for those suffering from substance use disorders. A cocaine abuse treatment program offers various types of treatment to help those who are struggling with addiction.
Outpatient treatment programs are essentially the opposite of residential treatment programs in terms of how intensive they are. Individuals who enroll in an outpatient addiction treatment center do not have to live at a rehab facility. Instead, they can receive treatment throughout the day and return home afterward.
There are various types of outpatient treatment programs. Individuals may enter a partial hospitalization program or an intensive outpatient program to receive treatment for cocaine addiction.
Therapy is a necessary component of cocaine addiction treatment. Many different types of therapy and counseling can be quite beneficial for those suffering from substance misuse. Some of the main types of therapy that may be found in a cocaine addiction treatment program include the following:
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT): Cognitive behavioral therapy is highly useful for treating underlying mental health conditions such as depression and anxiety, which can contribute to an addiction. During therapy sessions, therapists help patients identify negative thought patterns that influence unhealthy behavior.
- Individual therapy: In individual therapy sessions, patients speak one-on-one with a therapist. Patients can navigate complex emotions and talk through their feelings with a trained mental health professional.
- Group therapy: In group therapy sessions, patients can discuss issues that they share. Addiction can be a lonely experience. Therefore, patients are encouraged to connect with others who are experiencing the same issues as themselves during therapy sessions.
- Family therapy: Family counseling gives patients a safe and constructive space to work through issues with family members. Additionally, family members of a person with cocaine addiction can learn more about the effects of addiction in these sessions.
Chapters Recovery Center Offers Addiction Treatment in Massachusetts
The best way to treat addiction is through an evidence-based approach. Here at Chapters Recovery, we offer different types of therapy to help our patients overcome the challenges in their life that lead to their drug addiction. Often, drugs are used as a coping mechanism to deal with negative emotions in life.
At Chapters Recovery Center, we offer accountability and structure as they pursue freedom from cocaine abuse. We are committed to seeing you through the recovery journey. We will build your treatment program based on your initial consultation, where we will get to know you and the best options for your cocaine addiction treatment.
Even if you have been engaged in long-term cocaine addiction, there is hope. The treatment modalities at our Massachusetts addiction treatment center can help you overcome cocaine misuse for good.
If you’ve been looking for addiction treatment in Massachusetts, Chapters Recovery Center is here for you. So, if you’re ready to start your recovery journey, contact our Massachusetts cocaine addiction treatment center today. One of our admissions specialists can help you find the program that will work best for you.