Recovery From Cocaine Use

The use of cocaine creates a variety of emotional, psychological and physical symptoms.  Over time, the recovering addict may experience a decrease or even cessation of these symptoms.  In the meantime, however, recovery may bring its own sufferings.  The body and brain have adapted to the presence of cocaine and will take time to return to more normal functioning.  Some of the symptoms that the recovering addict may experience are depression; chills; body aches; tremors or shaking; an inability to experience pleasure; anxiety; difficulty concentrating and bodily pain.  Most of these symptoms will begin to disappear after a week or so.

There are no medications available to ameliorate these symptoms.  If the recovering addict also suffers from anxiety, a doctor may prescribe a benzodiazepine.  These drugs are used to treat anxiety, but they can also help with the symptoms of recovery.  Benzodiazepines are not prescribed solely to treat the symptoms of recovery from cocaine addiction.  If there is any good news regarding the sufferings that accompany recovery from cocaine addiction, it is that the negative impact of cocaine on the body and mind is lessened the earlier the person enters into recovery.  In other words, the symptoms of recovery get worse the longer the person abuses the drug.  A person who has used cocaine for a year will suffer more than a person who used for only a week.  The sooner you enter into recovery, the better off you’ll be.

A former victim of addiction to cocaine will often experience symptoms that are the opposite of the experience of being high on cocaine.  If the cocaine addict felt like they had almost endless energy, they will now feel a lack of energy.  As the body and mind return to normal function, without the presence cocaine in the system, the person will have to adapt to a different experience of life.  What seemed normal while the person was using cocaine will now seem strange and even uncomfortable.

It may be difficult for the recovering addict to admit that they need help.  Recognizing that their life was out of control, they, may be embarrassed or ashamed of their previous behavior.  In addition, they may have harmed other people in various ways.  They may have stolen from others or neglected their children resulting in seriously damaged relationships.  Their families may be unwilling to trust them and their children may resent their poor treatment.  They may have to form new friendships if they formerly spent most of their time with other addicts.  Repentance and atonement, while they may be painful, are very necessary.

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