Cocaine is a stimulant, a drug that makes an individual more alert or energetic. Cocaine is one of the most addictive drugs available. The desired effects of cocaine do not last long, and users must repeatedly snort, inject or smoke the drug to maintain their high. Individuals who smoke cocaine typically become addicted to the drug more quickly than those who inhale it, although all forms of cocaine use are dangerous and addictive.
The short-term effects of cocaine include but are not limited to the following:
The short-term effects, namely increased energy and loss of appetite, are what most cocaine users seek.
Continued use of cocaine leads to addiction and harmful long-term effects. These effects differ based on methods of cocaine use, but in general, long-term effects include the following:
Use-specific long-term effects include nosebleeds and difficulty swallowing for those who snort cocaine. User who ingest the drug can suffer from severe bowel gangrene, while those who inject have an increased risk of allergic reactions and contracting HIV.
Treatment for cocaine addiction is complex and requires treatment that will address the physical, psychological, familial, social and environmental aspects of addiction. The following are possible types of therapy a recovering user may choose:
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy teaches addicts to recognize triggers that will cause the individual to desire cocaine and consider relapse. Recognizing triggers allows recovering cocaine users to avoid or cope with the situation without returning to drug use. This method is often used in outpatient and residential programs.
In addition to therapy, recovering cocaine users need to build a support system that may include the following:
If you or a loved one is struggling with a cocaine addiction, we can help. We are available 24 hours a day to answer any questions you might have and to get you the help you need. Make the decision to change your life today. Our number is toll free, so please call now.