Clients sit in a circle at their cocaine addiction rehab center Illinois joins together industry and culture in a diverse setting. Home of Chicago, one of the most populated cities in the United States, Northern Illinois is a hub of traffic and excitement. However, along with the positive aspects of the area, there also is a high amount of drug usage

Whether it’s heroin, meth, cocaine, or benzos, the Northern Illinois area has its struggles with drug addiction. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, cocaine is one of the most widely abused drugs in the Chicago area of Northern Illinois. Luckily, help is available due to the presence of various treatment centers for drug addiction. Finding the right substance abuse treatment programs is the first step in healing, and Northern Illinois Recovery Center can help.

What Is Cocaine?

Cocaine is a highly addictive stimulant drug. It is derived from the coca plant that resides in South America.  It may sound like a natural plant product, but recreational cocaine use is not recommended due to the risk of developing a cocaine dependence. Although some doctors use cocaine as local anesthesia, it is not a prescribed medication. Instead, it is a drug that is sold on the streets and often mixed with other substances.

When it comes to appearance, cocaine is a white, powdery substance that looks similar to baby powder or very white flour. In fact, this drug often is mixed with powders such as flour, baby powder, baking soda, or cornstarch to increase dealers’ profits. Luckily, these substances are not psychoactive. However, there is a risk of cocaine being mixed with other drugs. Therefore, someone purchasing what they believe is pure cocaine may also be buying a drug mixed with amphetamines or local anesthetics such as procaine.

How Do People Use Cocaine?

There are a number of ways people use cocaine with intranasal use(snorting) being the most common. Users snort the powder through their noses during intranasal use. This causes cocaine to be absorbed by nasal tissues after which it can enter the bloodstream.

While intranasal use is the most common method of cocaine use, there are other ways that this drug is abused. Some users will take cocaine orally by rubbing it on their gums. Similar to intranasal use, the drug is then able to enter the bloodstream through the gum tissue. Further, one of the most concerning uses of cocaine is injection. Some users will mix cocaine with water and inject it intravenously (into a vein) to feel the more heightened effects of cocaine. 

Finally, some users smoke cocaine. This is another highly concerning method of administering this drug, as smoking cocaine can produce the same heightened effects that injection causes. Additionally, cocaine that has been changed into crack cocaine is often smoked. These methods are dangerous and can easily lead to the absorption of toxic amounts of cocaine. 

The Addictive Nature of Cocaine

To understand how people get addicted to cocaine, it’s crucial to look at how the brain responds to this drug. According to the National Institutes of Health, cocaine is responsible for causing dopamine to build up in the brain. Dopamine is the pleasure chemical of the brain and stimulates a person’s happiness and produces feelings of well-being. Since the drug enhances the brain’s natural “feel good” chemical and causes more of it to flood the body, the person gets a euphoric rush that is very addictive.

The rewards pathway of the brain deals with dopamine production. Different stimuli such as food or drugs stimulate this pathway, which reinforces the abuse of substances. Unfortunately, this pathway also deals with motivation and emotional regulation. This is why people who engage in cocaine use are unable to easily stop using once they have developed cocaine use disorders. 

Additionally, since cocaine is a stimulant, it also gives a person more energy, causing them to feel like they can accomplish many things. This may reinforce the idea that abusing cocaine is not a serious problem in an individual and lead to more cocaine abuse. However, cocaine abuse is very serious as it can lead to an addiction or substance use disorder, serious health consequences, or significant changes to the brain. 

The Signs and Symptoms of Cocaine Abuse

Once a person is abusing cocaine, cocaine addiction can easily develop. If you’re worried about developing a cocaine addiction, you may be wondering: how long does it take before a person becomes addicted to cocaine? It depends on the person; everyone is different. However, there are some clues that a person is becoming addicted and needing cocaine addiction treatment programs. Some of the signs are:

  • Thinking about doing cocaine all the time
  • Feeling anxious if you think about quitting
  • Missing work or social events because of drug use
  • Experiencing cocaine cravings when not using the drug
  • Going through a lot of money to abuse cocaine regularly 
  • Borrowing money to engage in substance abuse of cocaine

These signs of cocaine addiction often serve as a sign that you or a loved one should attend cocaine addiction treatment in Northern Illinois. Treatment programs are the next step after recognizing that you or a loved one has a problem with drug abuse.

Short and Long-Term Effects of Cocaine Abuse 

In general, drug abuse comes with both short-term and long-term side effects. The short-term effects refer to how the drug makes a person feel immediately. In contrast, chronic drug use produces long-term effects. Since a cocaine addiction will influence someone to continually use cocaine, the risk of developing the long-term side effects of cocaine abuse is highly likely. 

Short-Term Effects of Cocaine Abuse

Cocaine’s desirability comes from the short-term effects this drug produces. However, frequent use of this drug puts people at risk of developing a cocaine addiction. Short-term effects such as euphoria and a decreased need for food or sleep can contribute to a drug addiction. As people use cocaine more and more for these effects, the body becomes dependent on the substance to perform normally. 

The aforementioned effects of cocaine use are not the only effects, though. Many negative short-term effects result from using cocaine. Once cocaine enters the body, the following side effects can occur immediately:

  • Vertigo
  • Anxiety 
  • Irritability
  • Tremors 
  • Paranoia
  • Restlessness
  • Dilated pupils
  • Violent feelings
  • Muscle twitches 
  • Increased heart rate
  • Increased blood pressure 
  • Constricted blood vessels 
  • Increased body temperature
  • Sensitivity to light, sound, or touch
  • Potentially bizarre or erratic behavior

Some of these effects can lead to serious and immediate health complications. Serious consequences such as seizures, heart attacks, and strokes can occur due to frequent use resulting from cocaine addiction. Additionally, there are concerns regarding drug abuse and alcohol consumption as cocaine mixed with alcohol can produce toxic effects on the human heart. These effects are why rehab for cocaine addiction is important to seek if you are unable to stop using this drug. 

Long-Term Effects of Cocaine Abuse

Similar to other types of drug abuse, cocaine use comes with many negative long-term effects. First, the effects of cocaine abuse on the brain can cause a change in the central nervous system, affecting reward pathways. Subsequently, this leads to a cocaine addiction. This addiction then pushes users to continually chase the pleasurable feelings caused by the increase in dopamine in the brain. The best way to begin repairing these pathways is with cocaine addiction treatment.

If you have a cocaine addiction, it’s likely that you have been using the drug for some time. This is highly concerning as sustained cocaine use can cause a number of different physiological effects. Over time, chronic cocaine abuse can cause the following long-term side effects in a person with a cocaine-based substance abuse disorder:

  • Increased irritability, paranoia, and panic attacks
  • Worsening of an existing mental illness due to cocaine use
  • Cocaine withdrawal symptoms such as displeasure or irritability when the drug isn’t taken
  • An increase in tolerance resulting in the need to use larger quantities of cocaine to feel the same effects
  • Sensitization to cocaine
  • The development of psychosis and related symptoms such as hallucinations and a loss of touch with reality

As time goes on, these adverse effects generally become worse. Usually, this is because individuals begin to take more of the drug to try and diminish the negative effects they are feeling. Unfortunately, this only makes the effects worse and increases the chances of death due to toxic amounts of cocaine in the body. However, there is a way to break the cycle of drug abuse through treatment for cocaine abuse.

Treatments Offered by Cocaine Addiction Rehabs

Fortunately, cocaine addiction recovery is possible through addiction treatment. Many treatment centers offer programs that focus on providing help for cocaine addictions through various types of therapy and medical treatment. Further, treatment at a cocaine rehab will address the many factors that make up this complex condition. This can include environmental, social, and emotional factors.

Cocaine Addiction Treatment Options 

Treatment centers, first, start with medical detox to make sure that all of the cocaine is out of your system. Withdrawal can be a very uncomfortable process, and having professionals guide you along the way can make this process easier. Additionally, medical supervision provided by rehab centers can help address any health issues that arise due to the detoxification process. Next, once withdrawal symptoms subside, individuals experiencing cocaine addiction can begin one of the following treatment programs:

  • Residential Treatment: Residential treatment, also known as inpatient treatment programs, provide 24 hour care and supervision for people suffering from a cocaine addiction. This is usually the first treatment program that patients attend before moving to a less intensive level of care.
  • Partial Hospitalization Programs: Also known as PHPs, this type of substance abuse treatment program benefits patients who need a higher level of care than traditional outpatient yet cannot commit to residential rehab programs.
  • Intensive Outpatient Treatment: Also referred to as an IOP, this type of program offered at addiction treatment centers provides a level of care in between a PHP and traditional outpatient. 
  • Outpatient Treatment: Outpatient treatment at a drug rehab allows patients to receive care during the day and return home after. This is a great form of addiction treatment for patients who need a flexible program. 

These cocaine addiction treatment options provide a safe and sober environment for patients who are committed to overcoming cocaine addiction. The best treatment options for you will be recommended when you speak with a treatment provider. How long you’ve been abusing cocaine, how much of the drug you take, and any co-occurring mental health conditions will be taken into account to determine which program would benefit you the most.

What to Expect at a Cocaine Addiction Rehab

Cocaine addiction treatment centers offer different interventions to treat cocaine addiction. Many of the interventions will include behavioral therapy and other types of therapy to change what motivates the person in treatment. Unlike addictions resulting from alcohol abuse, cocaine addiction is not often treated through the use of medications. However, similar to alcohol rehab, various mental health services are provided.

Cocaine Addiction Therapies

As you enter a cocaine addiction rehab center for treatment, you will gain the skills and assistance needed to live sober. Here at Northern Illinois Recovery Center, therapy is the main feature of our cocaine addiction rehab program. This is a common method of rehabilitation that different drug abuse treatment programs utilize. Some of the therapies offered at a rehab center that you’ll find helpful include:

  • Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT): CBT is a type of therapy that seeks to change negative thought patterns and patterns of behavior while instilling positive coping skills in patients with a cocaine addiction. 
  • Individual therapy: In individual therapy sessions, a therapist assists patients with understanding their emotions. Through one on one sessions, patients learn how to respond better to situations that drive them to take drugs. 
  • Group therapy: Group therapy sessions conducted by a cocaine treatment center, provide support for patients who feel alone in their addiction. These therapy sessions help patients ease their sense of shame or isolation by discussing their addictions together. 
  • Family therapy: During family therapy sessions, the family of a patient is able to learn more about addiction and what causes it. Family therapy can also help the patient understand how their addiction affects their loved ones. 

All of these therapies are addiction treatment services available to clients across all our programs. Additionally, addiction is a condition that must be managed for life. Attending aftercare programs that provide support groups, sober living arrangements, and continued therapy can aid with the longevity of your sobriety and stability.

Where to Find a Cocaine Addiction Rehab in Northern IL

At Northern Illinois Recovery Center, you will discover a place to heal and find hope for the future. We have a compassionate staff of licensed clinicians who will lead you through the healing process. Of course, we will work with you to develop an individualized plan that includes addiction treatment that addresses your unique issues. 

Some of the addiction treatment programs you will find at our cocaine addiction rehab center include:

  • Detox Programs
  • Aftercare Programs
  • Recovery Coaching
  • Sober Living Programs
  • Dual Diagnosis Treatment
  • Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT)

Don’t let cocaine rule your life. Addiction treatment centers can help you overcome this debilitating and potentially life-threatening addiction. If you are ready to seek treatment, contact us today at Northern Illinois Recovery Center. We’ll help you take that first step on the pathway to healing.

References 

https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/research-reports/cocaine/what-treatments-are-effective-cocaine-abusers

https://archives.drugabuse.gov/chicago-illinois-0