Cocaine abuse is one of the most debilitating conditions seen in addiction medicine. It accounts for a high percentage of admissions to rehab programs. It also is a drug that has been known to induce those addicted to it to seek out other drugs when cocaine tolerance no longer allows them the high they used to enjoy. This is why Sagebrush specializes in cocaine testing and cocaine addiction treatment center in Mclean VA. Today we are taking a closer look at cocaine, its effects, and what you can do if you suspect that you or someone you love is suffering from an addiction to cocaine.
How Long Does Cocaine Stay In The System?
Cocaine is a persistent drug and can stay in the body’s system for up to 6 hours.
However, even after it breaks down, there is an active metabolite called benzoylecgonine that remains in the body. This remnant of cocaine use can take up to 48 hours to leave the body. This is the case even though the effective high of cocaine only persists for about an hour. The half-life of the benzoylecgonine is about six hours from the time that it breaks down from the cocaine in the system.
There are a number of tests that can detect the use of cocaine for significantly longer periods, including tests that take hair samples instead of blood or urine, and as more employers begin drug testing programs use of cocaine can make it difficult to find or keep a job.
Effects Of Cocaine Use
In general, users take cocaine for its properties as a stimulant to produce a feeling that is typically called a high. The drug floods the pleasure centers of the brain with high levels of dopamine, a naturally-occurring chemical messenger that can induce a feeling of energy and alertness.
The immediate effects of cocaine use may include:
- Intense feelings of wellbeing
- Increased sensation and sensitivity to stimuli
- A steep decrease in appetite
- Agitation, paranoia, or irritability
Cocaine also puts users at risk for certain health problems including:
- Severe headaches and chronic nosebleeds
- Sexual dysfunction
- Difficulty breathing or swallowing
- Heart attack or stroke, and seizures
- Sexually transmitted or bloodborne diseases from shared injections
- Overdose and sudden death
Whether snorted, smoked, or injected cocaine use can cause long-term alterations in the way that your brain metabolizes and uses chemical messengers. This may take the form of an inability to concentrate, sleep, or even remember simple things.
Get The Help You Need with Cocaine Testing
Addiction is a very serious disease, and cocaine addiction is among the most difficult to overcome. If you or a loved one is ready to stop using cocaine, you don’t have to face it alone. Sagebrush cocaine addiction treatment center in McLean VA provides testing, evaluation, and rehabilitation services that can be the first steps on your journey to sobriety. Give us a call at 866.488.1156 to find out more or schedule a consultation for cocaine testing.