Cocaine Addiction: In order to sustain a high, cocaine is often used in a binge pattern by being taken repeatedly in increasingly larger doses over a short period of time. This inevitably results in cocaine addiction.
Cocaine Addiction: What Is Cocaine?
It is a highly addictive and short-acting stimulant. It is synthetically derived from the coca leaf, a plant native to Peru, Colombia, and Bolivia. Users can commonly snort, inject, or smoke the substance.
This drug causes intense highs and lows. Many users tend to “binge”, taking the drug multiple times within a few hours. People who develop a cocaine addiction quickly lose control over their use of the drug. They feel a strong desire for it despite being aware of any medical, psychological, and/or social problems the drug can cause.
When a user stops using it they experience what is known as a “crash”. Crashing swings the user’s mood rapidly from feeling high to feeling distressed. Users can also experience severe paranoia, in which they lose touch with reality. These feelings cause intense cravings for the drug.
This can also lead to severe medical consequences to the circulatory, respiratory, nervous, and digestive systems. Those with serious additions will usually go to any length to keep using the substance. Crack in particular, with its rapid and intense high, is the most addictive.
Cocaine symptoms of withdrawal can include exhaustion, sleeplessness, hunger, irritability, depression, suicidal thoughts, and intense cravings for another hit. The memory of cocaine euphoria is powerful, giving it a reputation for having one of the highest drug relapse rates.
How Does Cocaine Affect The Brain?
The drug increases levels of the brain’s pleasure chemical, dopamine. Typically, after it is released, dopamine is recycled back into the cell that released it. This drug prevents dopamine from being recycled, which amplifies the signal and interrupts normal brain communication, causing a euphoric high. When people stop using it, the reverse happens, because the reuptake of dopamine is shut down.
After prolonged usage, the user will eventually build up a tolerance and feel incapable of achieving the euphoria of the initial high. This behaviour encourages users to take greater doses more frequently and heightens the risk for other adverse physical and psychological side effects.
At Aurora Recovery Centre, we are attentive to the recovery needs of every individual, whether they are physical, emotional, or psychological. Please contact us today. We’d be happy to answer any questions about addiction and mental health rehab.