Cocaine is a potent stimulant with a long and complex history. Although once traditionally used by the indigenous people in South America, cocaine is now known for its recreational consumption globally. Drug abuse should be dealt with promptly, especially addictions to cocaine.

Cocaine is commonly abused, but many individuals don’t understand the long-term consequences of this harmful substance. To find out more about the profound long-term effects of cocaine, continue reading.


What is Cocaine?

What is cocaine? To better understand the long-term effects of cocaine use, it’s important to know what it is. Cocaine, chemically known as benzoylmethylecgonine, is a highly addictive drug that affects the central nervous system.

Typically consumed in powder form through snorting, cocaine can also be smoked in the form of crack cocaine or injected. All methods of consumption are dangerous, and if you find yourself using any of these techniques regularly to take cocaine, we advise seeking addiction treatment.

Essentially, cocaine works by increasing the levels of dopamine. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter associated with pleasure and reward in the brain. It’s these feelings of pleasure that cause so many people to use cocaine over and over again, without thinking about the negative consequences.


Understanding Cocaine Addiction

As cocaine hijacks the brain’s reward system, people experience feelings of euphoria and increased energy levels. With regular use, cocaine users could potentially build a tolerance to the drug. Ultimately, this means they require larger doses of cocaine to achieve the desired effects.

It’s easy for people to become addicted to cocaine. Snorting a few lines here and there is likely to result in an addiction if you’re taking it regularly. It’s likely for users to experience intense cravings for cocaine. Many cocaine addicts are unable to quit the drug because of this exact issue.

With intense cravings come some problems; it can be difficult to overcome your drug addiction when you have such strong urges to relapse. Substance abuse often results in having to attend rehab, as withdrawing from cocaine independently can be tedious to manage alone.

When you withdraw from cocaine after realising the severity of your addiction, it’s normal to experience some withdrawal symptoms. Common cocaine withdrawal symptoms include dysphoric mood, fatigue, sleep disturbance, appetite changes, depression, and irritability.


Long-Term Effects of Cocaine Use

The initial effects of cocaine are well-documented, but what are the long-term effects of regular cocaine use? The long-term consequences of cocaine abuse are often overlooked. Prolonged cocaine use can be detrimental to both your body and mind.

In most cases, individuals who have been taking cocaine for a long period of time are more likely to experience a myriad of health issues. Let’s take a look at some long-term effects of cocaine.


Physical Health Effects

Cocaine use is associated with an increased risk of heart attack, stroke, and other cardiovascular complications.

Some studies have reported that abuse of cocaine is also associated with an increased risk of subsequent cardiovascular complications such as hypertension, coronary spasms, arrhythmias, cardiomyopathy, and atherosclerosis. Cocaine constricts blood vessels, which could lead to elevated blood pressure and strain on the heart.


Mental Health Effects

Depression, anxiety, and other mental health disorders are commonly linked to long-term cocaine use. Those who smoke crack cocaine are more likely to experience mental health issues in comparison to individuals using cocaine powder.

However, there’s no doubt that cocaine use in general can negatively impact your overall mental health. Dealing with psychological symptoms on top of overcoming past addictions can be tedious. This long-term effect of regular cocaine use should be dealt with by a medical professional.

It’s important to look after your mental health; therapy and support groups are great options to consider if you’re suffering from mental health.


Social Consequences

Cocaine is a controlled Class A drug, and it’s a criminal offence to be in possession of it. Being addicted to cocaine means you’re likely to be caught in possession of the drug. Carrying the drug leads to legal consequences, which can be lengthy and complicated to deal with.

Living with a cocaine addiction is difficult if you don’t have the expenses to fund your habits. Cocaine addiction can be financially draining, and many cocaine addicts find themselves spending huge amounts of money to sustain their bad habits.

Unfortunately for some people, these financial struggles result in debt and poverty. These bad decisions can have lasting impacts on relationships with family members and friends. Sometimes, addiction can leave relationships unfixable.


Finding Help for a Cocaine Addiction

The long-term effects of cocaine can be devastating. To prevent the long-term effects of cocaine use as much as possible, it’s vital to seek help immediately. Attending rehab offers the best way to overcome cocaine addiction.

At rehab, you’ll be able to safely complete a cocaine detox in a safe environment, surrounded by professionals who will be on hand to help you. You’ll have access to 24-hour care and will receive help when it comes to managing the tedious symptoms of cocaine withdrawal through the detox process.

If either you or someone close to you is suffering from substance use disorder, you should consider rehab. At Verve Healthcare, we understand how difficult and time-consuming it can be to find a suitable rehabilitation centre; this is where we step in.

We consist of a team of hard-working, friendly professionals who can find the best-suited rehab clinic for you or a loved one to attend. We can discuss different treatment options available at rehab while assessing your needs and circumstances.

Finding a suitable rehab is key. Rehab is a place where you can discuss your addiction openly, and meet other people who are in a similar position to you. You’ll be able to attend support groups and independent therapy sessions during your time at rehab.

Therapy sessions are great for addicts, giving them the chance to talk openly and find the root cause of their problems. If you’d like to find out more about our referral service, we encourage you to get in touch with a member of our team today. We’ll be happy to discuss our referral process with you.