Cocaine Withdrawal & Detox
While Colorado is a state grappling with the opioid epidemic, like so many other states in the U.S., there are other drug problems to address to including cocaine. Cocaine can be a difficult drug to stop using, and one of the reasons is because of the potential for cocaine withdrawal symptoms.
Symptoms of cocaine withdrawal can occur even when the drug is still in the user of the system, and unlike other drugs, cocaine withdrawal signs can begin almost immediately when someone stops using it.
Below is an overview of what the symptoms of cocaine withdrawal might look like, details of the cocaine withdrawal timeline, and information about how to safely detox from cocaine.
When someone takes cocaine, it creates a sense of euphoria, which is the high people experience. This is caused because the drug, like so many others, releases an unnatural amount of feel-good chemicals. This may feel good at the moment, but it’s one of the reasons people also experience negative side effects and withdrawal symptoms when they use cocaine.
Cocaine withdrawal isn’t as difficult as withdrawal from alcohol or other drugs, but it still has its own set of challenges.
Cocaine withdrawal can include both physical and psychological symptoms.
Symptoms of Cocaine Withdrawal
Right after someone uses cocaine, they might start to experience what seems like a crash, particularly if they had just binged or used a lot of cocaine during a short period of time. During a crash from a cocaine binge, the person will experience feelings of depression, agitation, paranoia, irritability and sleep problems. They may also have a lack of pleasure and fatigue as well as cravings for more cocaine.
Cocaine withdrawal signs and symptoms can include:
- Restlessness and agitation
- General discomfort
- Vivid dreams
- A sense of slowness
The cocaine withdrawal signs can vary among individuals, but symptoms such as vomiting and tremors which are common with other substances during detox don’t necessarily occur with cocaine.
The biggest cocaine withdrawal sign that people tend to have trouble dealing with are the cravings and the emotional cocaine withdrawal effects.
Some other possible but less common cocaine withdrawal effects can include slow cognition and thinking, suicidal thoughts, and occasionally physical symptoms like nerve pain. People who are in withdrawal from cocaine may also experience sexual-related side effects, such as an inability to become aroused.
Cocaine Withdrawal Timeline
The concept of cocaine withdrawal can be daunting, as can cocaine withdrawal treatment, particularly if you don’t know what to expect. This is a general cocaine withdrawal timeline that can give you an idea of what to expect.
- The first component of the cocaine withdrawal timeline is the crash. This is a time that can start immediately after you stop using cocaine, and this is when you will experience the most severe side effects. This first stage of cocaine withdrawal can last for a few days, and symptoms include irritability and depression, fatigue, anxiety, and intense cravings.
- Following the initial phase of withdrawal from cocaine is a period where even more intense cravings occur. Some of the symptoms of the crash may dissipate, but you may still feel very lethargic and depressed. This period can last up to 12 weeks for people who were heavy cocaine abusers.
- The final stage of cocaine withdrawal usually what occurs around ten weeks after stopping the drug, and some cravings may still persist, but they tend to be less intense
For some people, the cocaine withdrawal timeline may also include something called post-acute withdrawal syndrome. This is when someone may have extended emotional and psychological withdrawal symptoms like mood swings, anxiety, sleep disturbances, problems with energy levels and depression.
The specifics of a cocaine withdrawal timeline depend on a few primary factors including how long and how much cocaine a person used, whether or not they have co-existing mental disorders, whether the individual has previously tried to stop using cocaine and has relapsed, and also if they use other drugs in addition to cocaine.
Cocaine Detox in Colorado
A question some people have is whether or not they need to go to a professional cocaine detox facility. They are under the impression that since the symptoms of cocaine detox are less severe than from other substances they don’t need medical supervision. This isn’t usually the case, and a medically supervised detox can be very helpful as someone is withdrawing from cocaine.
First and foremost, detox from cocaine can be emotionally and psychologically very difficult, and at a professional cocaine detox treatment center, the staff would be able to provide the necessary medications to help the patient stabilize. Detox from cocaine can also lead to a higher risk of suicide, and this risk can be mitigated at a professional facility.
While there aren’t FDA-approved medications right now to treat cocaine withdrawal, there are some various psychological medications that can be extremely helpful.
People who are struggling with cocaine abuse can opt for an inpatient cocaine detox program or an outpatient option. In an inpatient cocaine detox program, not only can cocaine detox symptoms be treated, but the patient can start on the first steps of a comprehensive recovery program.
So, to sum up, the cocaine detox symptoms that are most common include the crash period with fatigue, cravings, bad dreams, and a general sense of sluggishness and slow thinking. Cocaine detox symptoms are often more emotional and psychological than they are physical as well and can include depression or anxiety. The cocaine detox timeline usually starts right after someone comes down off cocaine, and the acute symptoms can last for a few days, while more extended symptoms including cravings and expression can last for several weeks.
If you’re looking for a detox from cocaine, The Recovery Village at Palmer Lake offers an intensive program that specializes in this area. Whether you’re from Denver, Boulder, Colorado Springs or anywhere else in Colorado or the nation you may be eligible to begin cocaine detox with us. We also have facilities around the country as well.
Medical Disclaimer: The Recovery Village aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with a substance use or mental health disorder with fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options and their related outcomes. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider.