Cocaine is a highly addictive stimulant that works by tapping into the brain’s reward system, triggering dopamine release. Cocaine is often cut with other substances like cornstarch or fentanyl, so there is no way of knowing its potency. Cocaine addiction is not only dangerous to your physical health but causes problems in all areas of life, including relationships, work, and potential legal issues. If you are or know someone addicted to cocaine, you understand how difficult it can be to stop without help from a cocaine addiction treatment program.
At Gulf Breeze Recovery, we combine evidence-based treatments with holistic practices to treat all areas of your life. When you are ready to take the first step toward recovery, consider inpatient cocaine addiction treatment at Gulf Breeze Recovery in Florida. Call 833.551.2304 to learn about all of your treatment options.
Cocaine and Your Physical Health
Cocaine use has a long history. First introduced in the United States in the 1880s as an anesthetic for surgery, by the early 1900s, cocaine was widely used for an array of medical treatments until its addictive qualities were fully recognized. Cocaine became classified as a Schedule II drug in 1970. Despite being illegal as a recreational drug, cocaine is the second most used illicit drug in the United States, behind marijuana. The United States is the world’s biggest consumer of cocaine.
Cocaine begins working almost immediately, creating a stimulative effect that makes the user feel euphoric, mentally alert, energetic, and talkative. The method in which cocaine is used impacts its effects. For example, snorting cocaine does not produce as strong an effect as smoking or injecting it, but the high lasts longer. Once the effects have worn off, users experience a “crash” that includes depression and fatigue, promoting the desire for more of the drug, beginning the cycle of dependence that leads to addiction.
Both the short-term and long-term physical effects of cocaine addiction are severe. The most immediate risk is for overdose or sudden death caused by cardiac arrest or seizures followed by respiratory arrest. Other physical effects include:
- Weight loss due to loss of appetite
- Constricted blood vessels
- Nosebleeds and nasal infections
- Extreme insomnia
- Sexual dysfunction
- Chest pain and heart disease
Because cocaine use can make people feel invincible and impair judgment, they are also at higher risk of injury or illness caused by risk-taking behaviors such as driving at excessive speeds or sharing needles. They are more likely to have other addictions because of the use of alcohol or other drugs to “come down.
Cocaine and Your Psychological Health
There are significant psychological effects of chronic cocaine use. Repeated activation and overstimulation of the pleasure receptors in the brain alters brain chemistry to associate good feelings with the use of the drug, creating a psychological dependency. As a result, people believe that the only way to achieve or maintain a sense of well-being is to keep using cocaine.
Cocaine addiction affects the way an individual processes information and handles interpersonal relationships. Extreme mood swings, irritability, and agitation contribute to difficulties maintaining healthy relationships. Long-term use can impact daily functioning to the degree that individuals cannot manage their responsibilities, leading to the further breakdown of relationships. Other psychological effects can include:
- Panic attacks
- High anxiety
- Aggression and violent outbursts
Long-term cocaine use has been linked to personality changes comparable to schizophrenia. Cocaine carries a high risk of overdose, which increases when used with other substances.
Reach Out to Gulf Breeze Recovery for Cocaine Addiction Treatment
If cocaine abuse or addiction is causing problems in your life, the addiction specialists in the cocaine addiction treatment program at Gulf Breeze Recovery are here to help. From providing a safe, supportive, medically supervised detox to uncovering the roots of your cocaine use with evidence-based, holistic addiction treatment, through aftercare planning, we will support you each step of the way. Contact us at 833.551.2304 when you are ready to take back control of your life.