How to Comedown from Cocaine

How to Comedown from Cocaine

Overcoming the Cocaine Crash and Getting Support for Recovery

You know the reality. The high from cocaine is intense, coming on fast and typically lasting no more than an hour. Even less if you are smoking or slamming. We all are aware that increased energy levels and euphoria are associated with the drug. This happens because of the way that cocaine interacts with dopamine and receptors in your brain.

But what happens when the high wears off, and you come back to Earth? This is when it is important to know how to comedown from cocaine.

As the high starts to wear off, you’ll have feelings of physical exhaustion and intense fatigue. It’s typical to experience symptoms like a runny nose, increased appetite, and difficulty sleeping. Even though cocaine comedown can be unpleasant, it does pass with time. We suggest seizing this moment of misery and using it as the motivation to change and put cocaine in your past!

Keep reading to learn more about what it feels like, how long it lasts, and what you can do to ease cocaine comedown, as well as how to find effective treatment options for cocaine recovery from our caring staff at Purpose Healing Center.

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What Does it Mean to Come Down from Cocaine?

Cocaine comedown describes the period after cocaine use when a person is likely to experience the opposite effects of the drug. It’s very much a type of cocaine withdrawal. As the euphoria and stimulating effects wear off, you may feel fatigued and down.

Cocaine comedown can also make you feel hungry, achy, and depressed. During this period, you may have trouble sleeping or have mental health side effects. The intensity of cocaine withdrawal symptoms varies depending on previous drug use habits, how hydrated you are, and other factors.

We will delve into those as we explore the many pieces of fallout from a cocaine crash next.

Recreational Use vs Cocaine Binge

Everyone experiences some comedown symptoms after using cocaine, even if you’ve only done a few bumps at a party. However, these are worse for people who binge cocaine use, and even more so for crack cocaine binges.

To state the obvious, binging cocaine is when a person takes a lot of cocaine in a short time, whether it’s during a 24-hour period, over a weekend, or by staying awake for four days fueled by the drug.

No matter the exact duration, after spending so much time feeling high, cocaine comedown symptoms are more intense than they are for the average recreational user. Additionally, the high doses of cocaine associated with a binge increase the risk of restlessness, irritability, anxiety, panic attacks, psychosis, and even hallucinations.

A Shortlist of the Most Common Cocaine Comedown Symptoms

Most Common Cocaine Comedown Symptoms

As we all know, the high from cocaine is euphoric and stimulating. It suppresses appetite, makes you more social, and can boost confidence (or at least ego).

As you start to come down, you’re likely to begin experiencing the opposite effects, similar to the old adage, “What goes up, must come down.”

A selection of the typical cocaine comedown symptoms includes:

  • Runny nose or feeling like you have a cold or flu
  • Slow thinking, feeling foggy, ‘brain fog’
  • Increased appetite, especially for sweets and sugar
  • Feeling exhausted but unable to rest
  • Vivid dreams and sleep disturbances
  • Increased risk of depression and suicidal thoughts
  • Anxiety, irritability, and restlessness
  • Having body aches or pain

Many people also experience intense mental health effects and increased suicide risk after using cocaine. They may become suicidal, lash out from extreme anger, or experience hallucinations or delusions. These mental health risks are potentially life-threatening.

It’s important to seek professional treatment or at the very least, the supervision of a friend if you are experiencing symptoms like these after using cocaine. It is worth noting that the risk of major depression and suicide increases even more when using cocaine with alcohol.

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Managing the Cocaine Comedown Side Effects

I would love to tell you that after a long night, you can rest and you’ll feel better. Unfortunately, repeated stimulant use can make it hard to relax, even if you feel fatigued. Cocaine is also commonly cut with other stimulants with a longer half-life, which means you experience their stimulating effects longer.

Crashing from cocaine is normal after taking the drug. During this time, practice self-care and listen to what your body needs. Drink plenty of water to help flush your system. It can also be helpful to eat nutritious food, use a fan to manage sweating or discomfort, shower, or lay in a dark, cool room. Try distracting yourself with music, television, or something else.

For more intense comedown symptoms, especially mental health symptoms, it can be helpful to let someone know what is going on. This is especially true if you are experiencing depression or delusions, or having any thoughts of suicide (if you are having suicidal ideas, please reach out to 911 or *988 immediately).

What you should not do when coming down from a cocaine high is use the drug again to relieve the symptoms. Avoid drinking alcohol, smoking marijuana, or using other drugs to help relax. Combining cocaine with other drugs makes withdrawal more dangerous.

How Long Does it Take to Comedown from Cocaine?

Come Down from Cocaine

The cocaine detox process and its withdrawal symptoms are uncomfortable and once they start, most people are wondering when they will start feeling like themselves again. Recovery from a cocaine comedown happens in phases. During a comedown, intense symptoms last for hours. This is different for people with repeated substance use, who may have intense withdrawal symptoms for up to 2 weeks.

Even after this period, cravings for cocaine, psychological symptoms, sleep disturbances, irritability, and aches and pains may continue for months in the form of post-acute withdrawal symptoms or PAWs.

This is a general timeline of what to expect. However, factors like the dose of the drug, how frequently you use cocaine, and even your lifestyle habits affect how long cocaine withdrawal lasts. For example, repeated cocaine use, whether you eat healthy, hydration levels, and the amount of sleep you’ve been getting affect the intensity and duration of mental and physical symptoms.

What are the Effects of Long-Term Cocaine Use?

While cocaine doesn’t have the same overdose risk as opioids, there are negative side effects from long-term use. Repeated substance abuse changes your brain chemistry. The pleasure and reward centers no longer work as they should after alcohol or drug addiction.

People often seek out drugs to find this pleasure, rather than the food, relationships, or other things that make the average person happy.

When you use cocaine, it has physical and mental consequences. Physically, it reduces blood flow in the GI tract and makes problems like malnutrition and ulcers more likely. Having cocaine in your system increases heart rate, damages the cardiovascular system and brain, and can even lead to problems like heart inflammation, stroke, and impaired cognitive functions.

Long-term use can lead to depression, mood imbalances, suicidal ideations and attempts, and hallucinations in some people. With so many potential consequences, it’s important to seek cocaine addiction treatment sooner rather than later.

What to Do After Coming Down from Cocaine?

Individual Therapy

After coming down from the intense high of cocaine, it may be time to consider the roles cocaine addiction and substance use disorder play in your life. Many people experience cravings for months after the cocaine comedown has ended because of the way addiction affects the brain.

Cocaine can cost you more than just financially. It also comes with physical and mental health risks, relationship and family problems, and struggles at work. The easiest way to break out of this cycle is to seek effective treatment for a substance use disorder. With the right type of help, overcoming drug abuse in the form of cocaine becomes easier.

At Purpose Healing Center, our inpatient and outpatient addiction treatment programs including rehab, individual therapy, sober living, IOPs and PHPS, and support groups make this extremely difficult task much easier. You’ll learn skills for identifying triggers, managing cravings, and how things like proper sleep, water intake, and a healthy diet can support cocaine recovery.

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Get Support to Put Cocaine in Your Past at Purpose

We understand that cocaine is incredibly addicting and that it can be hard to quit without the right support. At Purpose Healing Center, you’ll find effective, safe, and welcoming treatment programs.

We offer dedicated medical detox facilities, inpatient and outpatient treatment, and aftercare services at Purpose, and have locations in both Phoenix and Scottdale.

Give our caring Admissions team a call to learn more about how we can help you start putting the cocaine cycles of binging and crashing in your rearview!

References

  1. https://www.brown.edu/news/2016-04-08/suicide
  2. https://nida.nih.gov/research-topics/cocaine#long-term
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9375660/