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3 Cocaine Withdrawal Symptoms You Should Know

By  Kyle Kirkland
Recovering from cocaine abuse is not easy, but if you know the withdrawal symptoms, you’ll be prepared to overcome them.

Whether you stop abusing cocaine immediately or gradually, you will go through withdrawal at some point.

“Unlike alcohol or opioid withdrawal, patients undergoing withdrawal from cocaine do not usually show obvious physical symptoms. Typical symptoms of cocaine withdrawal are brain-centered and manifest themselves through behavioral changes,” Antonello Bonci, MD, Executive Chairman & Founder of Global Institute on Addictions tells WebMD Connect to Care.

Because the typical symptoms of cocaine withdrawal are not as physical as other drug withdrawals, it’s important to watch out for these 3 cocaine withdrawal symptoms.  

Cravings

According to American Addiction Centers, a craving for cocaine could develop as soon as 90 minutes after someone uses the drug. People who have not used cocaine recently will most likely develop a strong urge to find a way to use cocaine. 

Behavioral Interventions are effective for cravings, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Motivational Incentives is one way to discourage drug use by providing financial awards or prizes based on clean urine test results.

Depression

“The onset of cocaine withdrawal is often marked by a “crash,” Harshal Kirane, MD, Medical Director of Wellbridge Addiction Treatment and Research tells WebMD Connect to Care. “This can progress to increased anxiety, irritability, and intense sadness or depression,’ says Kirane. 

Cocaine elevates dopamine — a chemical that helps you feel pleasure and reward — in the brain, and when the brain is not getting those dopamine spikes from cocaine use, depression can set in.

According to Mayo Clinic, medications such as Prozac or Wellbutrin — among other options — are examples of anti-depressants that can be prescribed by a medical professional.

Suicidal Thoughts

“If a person with cocaine use disorder abruptly discontinues use, they are likely to experience withdrawal symptoms that primarily impact the mind, such as suicidal ideation,” Ashley McGee, RN, Vice President of Nursing at Mountainside Alcohol and Drug Addiction Treatment Center tells WebMD Connect to Care.

The person struggling with cocaine withdrawal may feel worthless when they aren’t feeling the effects of the drug, so intervening is key to helping the person overcome the symptoms. According to Mayo Clinic, there are several methods to treat depression, from medications to addiction center rehabilitation to family support. You have options to help get you or your loved one through cocaine withdrawal.

Don’t Wait. Get Help Now.

If you or a loved one are struggling with addiction, WebMD Connect to Care Advisors are standing by to help.