In the United States alone, more than 1.5 million people use cocaine on a monthly basis or more. While a cocaine addiction can be challenging to break, it is possible. To fight addiction, it’s important to learn more about cocaine, its impact on the body and how to treat a cocaine dependence.

What is Cocaine?

man creating line of cocaine - cocaine addictionIn South America, residents have chewed on the leaves of the coca plant for centuries. In the 20th century, a specific element of the plant was identified and separated. Cocaine hydrochloride was the result.

Briefly, cocaine is a stimulant that companies used to use in beverages and medicinal tonics. At one time, physicians also used it as an anesthetic during surgery. Today, however, we know its addictive properties very well. As a result, the FDA classifies it as a schedule II drug, prohibiting recreational use.

Cocaine is a stimulant, which people often use for its potential to boost energy and create a sense of euphoria. Users snort, inject or smoke this drug.

The Side Effects of Cocaine Use

The results of cocaine that users look for may be a pleasant feeling and increased energy, but the negative side effects far outweigh any benefits. Cocaine is highly addictive, so developing an addiction is likely even for occasional users. Cocaine can also lead to an overdose, which might mean a coma, organ failure or even death.

There are a number of short-term side effects of cocaine use. Cocaine increases heart rate, pulse, and blood pressure. While that may not pose a threat to some, it can cause severe problems for those with existing cardiac conditions.

Cocaine consumption also disturbs sleep, often for a full 24 hours after users take it. It may also cause erratic or violent behavior. Some cocaine users report intestinal distress, with nausea being the most common side effect. It extreme cases, it can also lead to hallucinations or seizures.

Prolonged use often causes the side effects of cocaine use to get even worse. Permanent damage to the cardiac system is possible, and cocaine may also weaken blood vessels. A decrease in appetite can lead to unhealthy weight loss as well as malnutrition. Depression, anxiety and other mood or personality disorders can appear or worsen with addiction.

The Signs of Cocaine Addiction

Since a number of people occasionally use cocaine, identifying a cocaine addiction isn’t always straightforward. Any use, of course, can cause health problems, legal problems and the risk of addiction.

Physically, one way to spot cocaine addiction is by looking for changes to movements. People who develop addictions to cocaine may fidget more frequently, suffer from muscle tics or appear hyperactive. They may also appear to have lost weight or showcase a reduced appetite.

Cocaine users might also display substantial mood swings. Alternating periods of lethargy and hyperactivity could be a sign of a reliance on cocaine.

How to Recover From a Dependence on Cocaine

Once you recognize a cocaine addiction, finding addiction treatment programs for recovery is vital. The right treatment facility will offer programs designed to help patients recover from addiction through a variety of treatments. Following detox, a range of comprehensive therapies can explore the cause of addiction, prepare for independent living and prevent relapse.

Some of the top therapy and treatment options to fight addiction include:

Individual therapy
• Group therapy
• Dual diagnosis therapy
• Trauma therapy
• Fitness and outdoor therapy

After you or a loved one identifies a cocaine addiction, treatment can help. Crestview Recovery in Portland, Oregon, can help you overcome addiction once and for all. Reach out and call 866-262-0531 to start making positive life changes today.