Developing a substance use disorder is a scary and overwhelming experience. Its insidious nature can impact all aspects of a person’s life, including their physical health, mental well-being, their relationships, and even their financial standing. Cocaine is a prime example of a drug that has detrimental consequences for those that experience it. To address these issues, Clearbrook offers cocaine addiction treatment in Pennsylvania and Massachusetts that can turn the lives of our patients around.
What Is Cocaine?
Cocaine is a highly addictive stimulant derived from the coca plant. Primarily developed for medicinal purposes and found in many medications, cocaine became well-known for its numbing abilities. In the late 1800s, cocaine was also the main ingredient for Coca-Cola. Eventually, cocaine’s addictive qualities became apparent to the medical profession and pharmaceutical companies. The United States government made cocaine illegal in 1922 after thousands of deaths were reported.
It became popular again in the 1970s and ’80s for the quick high people received after taking the drug. A popular form of cocaine is crack which is smoked. By removing the hydrochloride, cocaine turns from a powder form into a harder “rock” form. Cocaine can also be put into a syringe and injected. In any form, cocaine is a deadly drug that kills tens of thousands of Americans every year. At our Northeast addictions treatment centers, we are helping to save lives by successfully treating cocaine addiction.
Signs and Symptoms of Cocaine Abuse
If you are suspicious that your loved one may be abusing this drug, being able to recognize the signs of cocaine abuse is crucial. This equips you with a greater deal of knowledge and understanding that serve as additional tools in the task of helping a loved one overcome their dependency.
Common cocaine abuse signs can include:
- Weight loss: Cocaine is a stimulant that suppresses the user’s appetite. Abusers may not eat for days or even for up to a week. If sudden and drastic weight loss occurs or the individual appears malnourished and has gaunt-like features, this may be an indicator of cocaine use.
- Runny/inflamed nose: Snorting is the most common form of consuming cocaine. Oftentimes, a cocaine user’s nose will appear red and inflamed, and constant sniffling may also occur. Furthermore, due to the damage cocaine creates within the nasal cavity, nosebleeds are common.
- “Track marks”: Cocaine and crack cocaine both have the ability to be injected with a hypodermic needle. Usually, once a cocaine user progresses to this level, it is difficult to use in any other form. By injecting any substance, including cocaine, the user will feel the euphoric effects faster because the chemical enters the bloodstream immediately. Injection soon becomes the method of choice for the user. Injection marks, also known as “track marks,” become more apparent and usually are accompanied by bruising of the skin. If a user continuously injects in the same veins, abscesses and infections can occur. Typically, the first “red flag” that a person may be injecting illicit substances is when they begin wearing long sleeve shirts and/or pants in warmer weather.
- Apparent insomnia: As stated earlier, cocaine is a stimulant, so naturally, a person that abuses the chemical will more than likely stay awake for longer periods of time. Although their minds and bodies crave rest, it is nearly impossible to fall asleep at the peak of a cocaine high. Cocaine users have been known to stay awake for days, even up to a week straight.
- Legal issues: Cocaine is highly addictive and very expensive, meaning an addict may go to great lengths to get their fix. As an addict progresses further into their addiction, their morals and values become compromised. Things they thought they’d never do become more justifiable as their dependence on cocaine grows stronger. They drive under the influence, shoplift from retail stores, steal from family members, friends, and other homes, sell drugs, and even turn to prostitution.
- Tooth decay: Known as “crack mouth,” this oral disease is characterized by tooth decay brought on by the damaging effects of cocaine residue on the teeth, which is made worse by a lack of adequate personal cleanliness. The combination of cocaine use and poor oral hygiene can cause serious dental issues, such as tooth loss, gum disease, and severe decay. In order to lessen the negative consequences and regain their oral health, individuals with this illness must seek professional dental treatment and maintain consistent oral hygiene routines.
- Loss of interest in normal life activities: Cocaine will take over the abuser’s life. Normal things like hobbies, work, religion, and spending time with family will seemingly disappear and not become a priority anymore. If a loved one was once a very active person and interested in spending time with friends and family and is now seemingly withdrawn from everyone and everything, there is a chance that drugs are involved.
What Happens When You Stop Abusing Cocaine?
When someone stops using cocaine, it can be very difficult from a psychological standpoint. Almost immediately after use is stopped, a crash occurs. This creates extreme depression, irritability, agitation, anxiety, and paranoia. This happens because the pleasure center of the brain has gotten used to getting cocaine, and now it has been removed. The craving to fill that void can be immensely powerful, making it difficult to stop using cocaine alone.
An individual may also experience prolonged withdrawal symptoms that persist for a significant amount of time, even after they stop abusing the drug altogether. It can be an intensely frustrating experience to want to stop cocaine abuse, especially without the proper support systems in place. This is why a drug rehab center with experience in treating cocaine addiction is imperative.
How Is Cocaine Addiction Treatment at Clearbrook Rehab?
From your first phone call to our Admissions Staff at Clearbrook Massachusetts and Clearbrook Pennsylvania, a plan is set in place immediately for the person suffering from cocaine addiction. The information gathered from you during your initial intake is passed on to our medical and clinical teams so they are better prepared to effectively help you from the moment you are admitted to our facility. This information allows our staff to begin devising necessary treatment plans and aftercare plans that will better assist you in achieving lasting sobriety.
For decades, we have helped patients get sober from cocaine and crack cocaine addiction. We can help your loved one safely detox from the drugs and give them the necessary tools to achieve continued sobriety. Our compassionate approach to recovery is intended to give patients the support that they need to overcome the challenges of healing from an addiction. No one should have to face this task alone. The resources are available now to ensure all who need it can regain control of their lives from the hold of this destructive stimulant.
If you or a loved one needs a cocaine treatment center, give our trained staff a call today to learn more about our options for addiction recovery. For more information regarding our Clearbrook rehab facilities, please contact us today.