Clinical cocaine detox is a process that helps you safely withdrawal from cocaine after discontinuing use. If you are struggling with chronic use or abuse of cocaine, we highly recommend a period of safe medical observation at Briarwood Detox Center before beginning a comprehensive inpatient or outpatient rehabilitation program.
Cocaine is an illegal stimulant drug made from the leaves of the Coca plant. It is made in the form of a fine, white powder and dealers often mix it with cornstarch or flour to maximize profits. Sometimes people also mix it with amphetamine, another stimulant drug.
Cocaine is an extremely powerful and addictive drug. When a person ingests it, it causes an excessive buildup of dopamine between nerve cells in the brain which disrupts normal brain communication. This is what causes the “high” that users feel after taking it. The effects of cocaine can be felt almost immediately and last anywhere from a few minutes to an hour.
Cocaine is known to “speed up” the body, so initially after using users may feel excited and full of energy but they are also prone to rapid mood swings and may suddenly become angry, nervous, or paranoid. After the high wears off, users typically feel depressed and tired for days.
Long-term abuse of cocaine can result in serious health problems, such as:
- Bowel decay (from reduced blood flow)
- Loss of smell
- Problems swallowing
- Higher risk for HIV and Hepatitis C
- Parkinson’s disease
- Severe paranoia
Mixing cocaine with alcohol is particularly dangerous and can result in overdose. Cocaine overdoses often lead to heart attacks, strokes, or seizures.
Do I Need Cocaine Detox?
If you are physically dependent on cocaine, a full detox program is not necessary but we do recommend a period of safe medical observation in a clinical environment while you are discontinuing all use of the substance.
Why Medical Observation?
Most often, detox from cocaine and other stimulants results in extreme exhaustion. Because of this, we provide consistent medical support and treat any uncomfortable symptoms that arise so clients can rest comfortably.
The intense cocaine cravings that occur after a crash is often the most difficult time for people in cocaine detox. Many times this is also coupled with extreme anxiety or depression, which puts them at risk for self-harming behaviors.
Medical observation at Briarwood Detox Center provides the support you need to get through the initial binge and crash cycle and break your physical dependence. It is absolutely necessary for a safe withdrawal from cocaine. Our medical and clinical team will provide essential medical services by monitoring your vitals and heart rate, treating related symptoms, answering questions and offering therapeutic support with individual and group counseling sessions.
Cocaine Withdrawal Symptoms
Although withdrawal is different for everyone, some common cocaine withdrawal symptoms include:
- Strong cravings
- Body aches
A multidisciplinary treatment team will work together as a cohesive unit to address any physical and emotional needs you may have and provide 24/7 medical monitoring during this time.
Management of Withdrawal Symptoms
The staff at Briarwood is fully prepared to recognize and treat the symptoms of cocaine withdrawal. We will administer medication to treat unpleasant physical symptoms of withdrawal so you can remain comfortable throughout your stay. Cocaine detox can be dangerous if attempted at home, so we highly recommend that you detox in a medically assisted detox center such as Briarwood. Completing this process under medical supervision is the safest and most comfortable way to endure cocaine withdrawal.
Cocaine Withdrawal Timeline
- 1-3 hours after the last dose: You will probably begin to experience withdrawal symptoms very shortly after your last dose. These may include irritability, exhaustion and anxiety.
- 1-7 days after the last dose: During the first week of withdrawal, you will likely experience intense cravings, insomnia, depression, and mood swings.
- 2-4 weeks after the last dose: You will likely still experience strong cravings for cocaine and you may also feel very irritable and easily agitated. Many people also have extremely vivid dreams during this time.
- 5-10 weeks after the last dose: Cravings will ease up during this time and so will any other lingering withdrawal symptoms, although you may still feel anxious or depressed.
What Happens During Cocaine Detox?
When you arrive at Briarwood Detox Center on your first day of detox, you’ll have the opportunity to meet your resident advocate and detox counselor. We will give you a tour of the property and help you fill out your intake documents. Within your first hour on-site, you’ll meet with our medical staff for a comprehensive medical assessment to address your current health status and any coexisting mental or medical disorders. After this, a period of safe medical observation will begin.
Safe Medical Observation
Your medical treatment team will provide around-the-clock medical observation to ensure your vitals, heart rate and any other related symptoms are under control. Our nurses will check on you every four hours to provide the most consistent, well-rounded care. We may also provide treatment for related physical symptoms to alleviate discomfort and help you get the rest you need to recover.
Individual and Group Counseling
Your detox counselor will also be available for psychological support as you begin to experience the emotional side effects of cocaine withdrawal and adjust to a lifestyle without substance abuse. This counseling will also help prepare you for ongoing substance abuse treatment, should you decide to continue with our recommended care plan.
How Long Does Medical Observation for Cocaine Last?
Most often, medical observation for cocaine requires a stay of 24 to 72 hours at Briarwood Detox Center. This timeframe will vary depending on your circumstances. Your treatment team will work with you to determine an appropriate timeframe for your observation.