Cocaine Addiction and Recovery

Cocaine is a highly addictive stimulant created from the leaves of the coca plant. This powerful drug increases dopamine levels in the brain, leading to short and long-term abuse.


The pharmaceutical company, Merck, initially produced cocaine in the 1880s. Initially, the drug was used to treat morphine addiction, toothaches, and even depression.

Cocaine has a white, crystalline appearance and can sometimes be mixed with amphetamine, talcum powder, and flour. Nicknames for cocaine include:

  • Coke
  • Rock
  • Snow
  • Crack
  • Blow
Cocaine Use and Withdrawal

Cocaine is highly potent and habit-forming and can be injected, smoked, or snorted. Users can become addicted after a single use.

Signs of use include dilated pupils, irregular heartbeat, restlessness, and nausea.

The drug produces a euphoric high that lasts anywhere from 5-30 minutes, depending on how it is being used. Injecting cocaine creates an intense high but puts users at risk of bloodborne diseases, particularly when using a shared needle.

Some users may find they are more alert while using cocaine, however, many experience difficulty focusing. Behavioral changes such as aggression, anxiety, sensitivity to light and sound, and even violent thoughts may occur.

Snorting, injecting, and consuming cocaine can lead to long-term health effects such as:

  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Nosebleeds
  • Loss of sense of smell
  • HIV

  • Hepatitis C
  • Loss of appetite
  • Malnourishment

Continuous abuse of cocaine can lead to tolerance of the drug, causing the user to take larger amounts with each additional use.


A medical assessment can help determine what kind of treatment is required for a patient’s safe recovery. Contact Elan today if you or someone you know would like more information regarding our treatment services.