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What Are the Symptoms of Cocaine Withdrawal?

What Are the Symptoms of Cocaine Withdrawal?

Cocaine is a highly addictive narcotic drug in the form of a white powder that users generally self-administer by insufflation through the nose. This stimulant can cause the brain to release high levels of certain brain chemicals, which leaves the person feeling euphoric. Cocaine can lead to physical and psychological dependence, making it difficult for the person to stop taking it. The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that over 5 million Americans use cocaine. The overdose rate has constantly been increasing since 2012, with cocaine responsible for one in five overdose deaths in the United States.

Quitting is an encouraging step that can reduce the risk of overdose and foster recovery. However, the individual may experience cocaine withdrawal symptoms a few hours or days after stopping. This usually happens because the body struggles to live without the substance. The body will crash, cravings will set in, and the person will return to using again. This post will explain what cocaine detox symptoms are and how they can be managed effectively.

DetoxLA is an inpatient drug and alcohol rehab in Los Angeles. Contact us today to learn more about our cocaine detox program.

What is Cocaine Withdrawal?

Cocaine withdrawal happens when an individual abruptly stops taking cocaine after a long period. Cocaine withdrawal can lead to various physical and emotional symptoms. If not effectively managed, the person may never quit using. Cocaine withdrawal symptoms can be uncomfortable and dangerous, but medical health professionals and facilities can manage these symptoms. You need to contact the right hospital or specialist center to get started with treatment.

As mentioned, cocaine forces the brain to release increased levels of dopamine and other neurotransmitters, causing elevated levels of euphoria. Over time, cocaine causes the body to adjust to these high levels. So when you stop using, the body will be forced to readjust. This sudden transformation is intense, and that’s where the risk of relapsing is high.

How Long Do Cocaine Withdrawal Symptoms Last?

Cocaine withdrawal symptoms can begin a few hours after the last use and last for several weeks or months. The duration depends on the severity of the addiction.

A few hours after stopping cocaine use is acute withdrawal. If it stretches to a week or two, it’s chronic withdrawal or subacute withdrawal. This period can last for up to eight weeks.

Symptoms of Cocaine Withdrawal?

Cocaine withdrawal symptoms differ according to the intensity of use and the individual’s body. When an adult cuts back on using cocaine entirely, the person may experience common physical symptoms, such as body and mental exhaustion, muscle aches, skin itching, tremors, slowed movement, fatigue, and headaches. In addition, the person may also have an increased urge to use it again.

Besides, cocaine withdrawal can also cause some psychological symptoms. These symptoms may include depression, agitation, difficulty making decisions, suicide, anxiety, irritability, insomnia or sleep disturbances, and restlessness. In some cases, the individual may experience unpleasant dreams or nightmares. The more serious symptoms include seizures and heart attacks.

These symptoms can be severe, unpleasant, and painful, making it challenging to quit using the drug. Typically, those who have used cocaine for a long period or in elevated doses are more likely to experience intense withdrawal symptoms. It’s crucial to seek medical help when you want to quit cocaine instead of stopping on your own. This will manage cocaine withdrawal symptoms.

Treating Cocaine Withdrawal Symptoms

Cocaine withdrawal symptoms can be severe and disruptive. While it can be tough to manage these symptoms, several treatment options are available to help minimize the discomfort and foster recovery. You can manage cocaine detox symptoms in the following ways:


Medications can help ease the pain. Note that there are no particular medications to cure cocaine withdrawal. However, some drugs like antidepressants and antipsychotics can help alleviate depression and anxiety and manage paranoia.


Behavioral therapies, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), interpersonal therapy, and motivation therapy, can effectively manage cocaine withdrawal symptoms. Therapy can help patients cultivate and learn coping skills and identify triggers that can result in relapse.

Support groups

Rehab centers have support groups you can join to accelerate recovery and maintain sobriety. Some include Cocaine Anonymous (CA) and Narcotics Anonymous (NA). These groups can provide emotional support and help individuals stay motivated to quit using permanently.


Practicing self-care can also manage withdrawal symptoms. This is one part that people experiencing withdrawal symptoms ignore. Exercise, yoga, mindfulness, and meditation can help reduce stress and promote overall well-being.


Nutrition can ease the pain of withdrawal symptoms. A healthy diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables restores the body’s balance and promotes sound health.

DetoxLA Can Help Manage Withdrawal Symptoms

Cocaine withdrawal can be challenging and painful. It may take time to manage the symptoms effectively, but you’ll certainly overcome them. Every addict on the path to recovery passed through this phase and eventually lived a drug-free life. If you or someone you know is struggling with cocaine addiction, seek help from a healthcare professional or addiction specialist as soon as possible.