What are the Physical Signs of Addiction to Cocaine?

Physical addiction to cocaine and its treatment are important to understand in order to overcome cocaine addiction. Understanding the physical signs can support better comprehension of how to move forward with helping loved ones who are struggling.

Physical Dependence on Cocaine

While dependence is closely related to the need of the body for more cocaine, the drug’s addictive quality is related to the mindset of the individual who uses the drug. Addiction creates cravings, driving people who use the drug to use cocaine for the ‘positive’ effects, ignoring adverse side effects. Physical dependence on the drug does not, by itself, indicate addiction. Cocaine is also psychologically addictive, especially for those who use frequently. The difference is the short ‘rush’ and long-lasting ‘crash’ results so cocaine users often go for the next dose with no second thoughts.

Physical Signs of Addiction

Physical signs of addiction to cocaine can include withdrawal symptoms which occur during times of lowered dosage or stopping use of the drug. Symptoms of withdrawal often including vomiting or shaking that accompanies the withdrawal from heroin or alcohol. Symptoms tend to be psychological and include some of the following issues:

  • Agitation
  • Alternating low and high cravings
  • Depression
  • Disorientation
  • Fatigue
  • Hunger
  • Increased appetite
  • Low to high anxiety
  • Paranoia

Craving and depression experienced during withdrawal may last for months for some people who use the drug with a past history of heavy use. Withdrawal symptoms may also be associated with suicidal thoughts in people.

Treating Physical Symptoms of Cocaine Addiction

Approximately half of people with addiction to cocaine have also been diagnosed with other mental disorders, especially depression and attention-deficit disorder. The conditions should be suspected and treated by a professional who understands cocaine addiction treatments. All prescription drug use should be monitored carefully.

Symptoms of dependence or addiction usually disappear over time. There are no effective medications for reducing craving though some are tested. Some studies reported medications such as bromocriptine may help reduce people’s cravings, increase energy and normalize sleep. Withdrawal drugs are not recommended as it may result in shifting addiction from one substance to another.

Sustain Recovery provides a unique approach to adolescent care. Gender Separate Extended Care treatment provides a unique, tailored approach to addiction recovery that is supportive of wherever an individual is at. Call us to find out how we can help you get started.