08 Nov Cocaine Withdrawal Timeline
It goes without saying that crack cocaine is a very dangerous drug. Unfortunately, cocaine is extremely easy to become addicted to, so even “trying” it just a few times is not only illegal but extremely unwise and a risk to your overall health and body. Once cocaine has been introduced into an individual’s system, and an addition occurs, it doesn’t take long for signs of cocaine abuse to show.
Hopefully, if you or someone you know has become addicted to cocaine, there will come a point in time when the decision to get help is made. During that time, in which cocaine is removed from the system, it is common for the process of withdrawal to take place. Though difficult, experiencing withdrawal from cocaine is better than staying an addict.
This article with help educates you on all things withdrawal, including a withdrawal timeline that will showcase the various steps of the procedure and what to expect. Further, you will learn about cocaine abuse, and how it is never too late to get the help you need.
For example, did you know that the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) has reported that over 14 percent of all Americans age 12 and older have used cocaine in their lifetime? Even though this is a startling fact, remember, you can always make the choice to end addiction.
About Cocaine Abuse
Before you can fully understand and grasp the concept of cocaine abuse, including the different signs of cocaine abuse, it is imperative to learn a little bit about cocaine.
To start, cocaine (often known as coke, snow, blow, white, dust, etc.) has been described by the NIDA as being a “powerfully addictive stimulant drug.” Cocaine is a Schedule II drug, meaning that has the high potential for abuse. Further, this drug is a stimulant, and when this stimulant is put into the body, cocaine has serious effects on the brain. The drug accomplishes this by increasing a person’s energy levels, allowing them to stay awake for long periods of time. Yet, during this time, the user’s heart rate and blood pressure increase.
This drug is generally seen on the streets, or as a “party drug.” In the latter example, the drug is commonly abused, leading to addiction, harm, and in worst case scenarios, overdoses—and death.
In 2013, the NIDA revealed that almost 5,000 people had died from a cocaine overdose.
There are two forms in which individuals can and often do abuse cocaine: snorting it or smoking it. When cocaine is smoked, it is usually referred to as “crack” or “crack cocaine. As such, this article will elaborate on the crack withdrawal timeline, which is, for the most part, in sync with the cocaine withdrawal timeline.
Signs of Cocaine Drug Abuse
For a moment, consider your best friend, partner, family member—someone close to you. Chances are, you know them well, understand them through and through, and therefore, can immediately tell when they are dealing with some sort of issue. This statement is not made to put blame on you (or anyone) else for not being aware of an addiction problem, but to show the importance of awareness.
Truth be told, many people hide their addictions and hide them quite well. However, if you are present and aware, you may be able to recognize when someone close to you is struggling with a drug problem. And if not, these signs of cocaine abuse can help you.
Both specific and common signs that cocaine abuse is taking place can include the following:
- Dilated Pupils
- A Runny Nose
- Significant Weight Loss
- Random Mood Swings
- Social Isolation
- Risky or Unsafe Behavior
- Frequent Nosebleeds
- Uncharacteristic Boost in Confidence
- Overly Talkative
Now, it is vital to understand that just because you see someone with a runny nose or experiencing a nosebleed does not mean that he or she is addicted to cocaine and/or abusing the drug. The last thing you want to do is jump to a conclusion or make a wrong accusation. A constant runny nose or random nosebleed may alert you, but before you confront someone, you may want to get a little bit more information.
Additional, perhaps even stronger examples showing signs that cocaine abuse is taking place can include the following:
- Changes in sleeping patterns
- Changes in eating patterns
- White residue/substance under the nose
- White residue/substance around the mouth
- Burn marks on the hands
- Burn marks on the lips
- A sudden trouble with finances
- Loss of interest in certain things
- An increased need or want for privacy
Again, the symptoms listed above do not guarantee a cocaine problem is occurring, though, they should at least alert you. If you happen to notice one or more of the signs listed above habitually occurring, then it may be important to do further research to discover whether or not a cocaine addiction is taking place.
The Dangers of Cocaine Abuse
Cocaine begins to take effect as soon as it enters the body. Yet, because of this fact, that also means that the high does not last all that long, prompting the individual to use again—and quickly. Particularly, a cocaine high has been known to last between 5 to 30 minutes, depending on how much of the drug is consumed and over what kind of time period.
People who have consumed cocaine may become more talkative and energetic, have a boost in confidence, lack an appetite, and avoid sleep, all of which have been mentioned above. Once this high begins to wear off, the user will experience a crash and all these desired side effects will quickly dissipate.
Not only does a person risk their mental and physical health by abusing cocaine, but the way in which they choose to consume the drug can also result in a different kind of damage to his or her body.
Specifically, people who shoot cocaine instead of snorting it may be more likely to contract HIV or hepatitis C. This is due to the fact that sharing needles, especially dirty ones, commonly leads to disease. Cocaine users are also susceptible to blood poisoning as well. Long-term health effects of cocaine abuse include hallucinations, a decreased appetite resulting in malnourishment, paranoia, and gastrointestinal effects.
It is imperative to note that no one is immune to the dangers of cocaine—whether it is used, a few times, or repeatedly. Anyone who exposes themselves to the drug risks the possible consequences. This is mainly true because cocaine is so addictive.
It will be difficult for a person to stop using cocaine. Though this is the best decision, it will still be painful, as withdrawal symptoms will occur. These symptoms can last a while, and even make an individual question this decision. However, despite the common withdrawal symptoms, it is imperative to stay strong.
Common Withdrawal Symptoms
Withdrawal is typically known as a condition, a condition that takes place when an individual chooses to stop depending on a substance, such as cocaine.
During the withdrawal condition, a person can face both physical and mental health complications. For starters, and possibly the biggest risk is a cardiac issue. During detox and withdrawal from cocaine, a person has the increased chance of developing an arrhythmia or infarction (i.e. heart attack).
Another symptom of cocaine withdrawal is seizures. In fact, a person who is still addicted to and using cocaine can even experience seizures.
Because of these symptoms, and how dangerous they can be, when a person decides to stop using cocaine, he or she should seek out professional medical assistance. If a doctor or nurse is involved in the process, then it will be less likely for something damaging to occur.
Mental health concerns that are often associated with cocaine withdrawal include depression, suicidal thoughts, aggression, paranoia, and even violent acts. Again, due to these conditions, it is best to experience all the potential dangers of withdrawal at a drug detox or cocaine treatment center, as these venues have a variety of tools and techniques to keep individuals completely safe.
Here is a specific and detailed list of common cocaine withdrawal symptoms:
- Lack of energy
- Lack of motivation
- Lack of Concentration
- Mood Swings
- Cocaine cravings
The Withdrawal Timeline
As previously detailed, there are many mental and physical symptoms associated with the act of withdrawal. Interestingly enough, though, there is a timeline in which many of these symptoms occur. They might not happen all at once, and depending on the individual’s cocaine usage, they might not happen at all.
Generally speaking, a cocaine withdrawal generally lasts from 7 to 10 days. However, that doesn’t mean that the cocaine cravings will never come back. In fact, a person can even experience the urge to use again for years and years after they’ve “beaten” the habit.
Because the high from cocaine doesn’t last overly long, individuals can experience withdrawal symptoms as soon as 90 minutes after having used the drug
For people who have abused cocaine for only a short while, withdrawal symptoms are likely to last much shorter. Yet, those who have consistently abused cocaine, especially for years, can experience withdrawal symptoms for weeks.
The amount of the cocaine that has been abused can and will also affect the withdrawal timeline and period. Those who often use large amounts of cocaine will, obviously, experiencing a longer and more difficult withdrawal period.
Stress can also have a large effect on the withdrawal experience, as well as the individual’s environment, and whether or not he or she abuses other drugs alongside cocaine, including alcohol and other narcotics.
Other Names for Cocaine
Depending on how knowledgeable you are on cocaine, you may or may not be aware of the fact that there are a variety of other names associated with the narcotic. Below, you will find some of the most popular ones:
- Snow White
- White Powder
- White Fluff
- Big C
Regardless of the name, the drug has the same and carries with it the same consequences—both legal and health.
Many of the health consequences of cocaine abuse have been outlined above. However, the legal ramifications, which can be quite costly and life-changing, have not been detailed. Take a look:
The cocaine possession laws in Georgia will be determined by how much of the substance is found. If an individual is found with less than 28 grams of cocaine, then he or she could serve between 5 to 30 years in prison. This crime is a felony. If an additional offense occurs, the accused could face another 10 to 40 years in prison. This person could also face life in prison. Once an individual is charged with a felony offense, it will be extremely difficult to find a job and/or gain credit. Unfortunately, this charge will follow you wherever you go, and deeply affect the quality of your life. The drug possession laws in Georgia are strict for a reason. The state of Georgia is fighting their war on drugs with harsher punishments and stricter rules.
Getting Legal Assistance
Regardless of your offense, whether you were caught using or selling cocaine, it will be important for you and your future to find appropriate legal assistance. A professional lawyer, someone who has experience in this specific area of the law, can help you tremendously with your case.
A good lawyer will also educate you on what defines a bad defense, or a defense that will not hold up in a court of law. Bottom line: If you are found with cocaine, you could face some serious trouble, and therefore should have a professional on your side to assist you. Remember, mistakes happen. If you have learned your lesson and hope to move on with your life, it will be best to have a lawyer argue for the least damaging punishment possible.
Never Too Late to Get Help
This article should not deter you from wanting to get help, but the complete opposite. Yes, getting help and getting over your cocaine addiction will be difficult, and the withdrawal period with be painful, but the results are completely worth it. Treating your cocaine addiction in Georgia will help you regain your life and help you move forward from this dark period of your life. It is never too late to get help, and the sooner you seek help, the better you will feel.
Lautieri, Amanda. ‘Cocaine Withdrawal Timeline, Symptoms and Treatment.” American Addiction Centers. 14 Mar. 2019. https://americanaddictioncenters.org/cocaine-treatment/withdrawal
“Hartney, Elizabeth. “What to Expect from Cocaine Withdrawal.” Verywell Mind. 17 Nov. 2018. 14 Mar. 2019. https://www.verywellmind.com/what-to-expect-from-cocaine-withdrawal-21990
Weber, Lee. “The Cocaine Withdrawal Timeline Chart.” Addiction Blog. 14 Mar. 2019.https://addictionblog.org/infographics/cocaine-withdrawal-timeline