You are probably wondering what are crack withdrawal symptoms that you should expect as you enter into the first stages of recovery from an active crack cocaine addiction. The best way to beat a crack cocaine addiction is with the assistance of a medically assisted detox program. Treatment using medication is the perfect crack addiction treatment. Medically assisted treatment helps to mitigate the withdrawal symptoms withdrawal effects crack cocaine leaves with former users as they enter recovery. When the time comes for you or a loved one to free yourself from crack cocaine addiction, you need to contact the wellness coaches at Better Wellness Group.
What is Crack Cocaine Withdrawal Symptoms
Crack cocaine is a highly addictive chemically and psychologically addictive drug. Because an addiction to crack cocaine can be so challenging to overcome, those who desire to quit using are advised to undergo a medically supervised detox in a clinical setting. Withdrawal from crack cocaine comes in two very distinct phases. The first phase of crack withdrawal is the acute withdrawal from the drug. It is during the first week that the patient experiences immediate and usually most severe symptoms. The second phase of crack cocaine withdrawal is post-acute withdrawal (PAWS). PAWS refers to more chronic psychoemotional symptoms that can last several weeks or months after use has stopped. Common acute crack cocaine withdrawal symptoms include the following:
- Disturbing dreams
- Difficulty concentrating
- Mood swings
Crack Withdrawal Symptoms
Protracted withdrawal symptoms may include the following:
- Drug cravings
- Sleep disturbance
- Lack of motivation
- Inability to feel pleasure
- Emotional outbursts
Crack Cocaine Withdrawal Timeline
Between the first 24-72 hours of crack cocaine withdrawal, the user will experience paranoia and body pain with a good chance of hallucinations. During the first week of withdrawal from crack cocaine, a sense of lethargy will set in, causing trouble sleeping, extreme fatigue, mood changes, and irritability. In the second week of crack cocaine withdrawal, the depression will set in and there will be more intense cravings for the drug because the brain is still processing the lack of the substance that it had become dependent upon.
In the second week, there won’t be dopamine for the user to sense positive emotions; therefore, anxiety will take a toll on the user. Throughout weeks three and four the user’s mood will fluctuate often because the body’s chemistry is still changing. During this time the physical craving will subside, but the depression and anxiety will remain.
Medications for Crack Detox
Health providers at medically assisted drug treatment centers typically design detox strategies based on the patient’s individual needs. Unlike with other substances, while detoxing from the crack, during crack cocaine withdrawal, patients usually don’t use a tapering method to detox from crack. What generally occurs is that the addict quits cold turkey while receiving direct medical supervision. In a large majority of the time, there are certain medications administered to work to mitigate crack withdrawal symptoms. Drugs that may be prescribed for crack withdrawal include, but are not limited to, the following:
Gabapentin or Neurontin is a medication which is officially used to treat the following issues:
- Hot flashes
- Restless legs syndrome
- Neuropathic pain
During a detox from crack cocaine, it is important to counteract some of the neurological effects of entering recovery during a crack cocaine detox. The drug attaches to the brain’s GABA receptors to counteract the neurological impacts from the abuse of crack cocaine.
Vistaril is a prescription medicine used to treat the symptoms of anxiety, itching or hives on the skin and as preoperative sedation. Vistaril may be used alone or with other medications, including Gabapentin, Trazodone or Seroquel for withdrawal from crack cocaine. Vistaril is a drug that is only used for the short term to help alleviate some of the immediate symptoms of crack withdrawal. The goal of medically assisted detox is to minimize the negative effects of detox as a person enters rehab and begins recovery.
What Causes Crack Cocaine Withdrawal Symptoms?
When crack cocaine is smoked instead of snorted (as the powdered variant of cocaine is), it is absorbed quickly into the bloodstream and travels to the brain. The fat-soluble nature of crack allows it to cross the blood-brain barrier more easily than other forms of the drug. In this way, the drug starts kicking in its intense effects within ten seconds.
As soon as the drug enters the brain, it interferes with the neurotransmitter system that regulates pleasure. The neurotransmitter dopamine in the brain is boosted, resulting in greater levels of excitement and pleasure.
After using cocaine for a long time, especially crack, your body becomes accustomed to the stimulant in order to maintain the brain’s elevated levels of dopamine and the euphoria it produces. You will need to boost the amount you consume over time, as your system will become tolerant.
You are now addicted. When you try to stop using the drug, your brain will have trouble regulating dopamine levels, resulting in withdrawal symptoms.
Does Treatment for Crack Cocaine Addiction Work?
There are former addicts that have recovered from crack addiction and gone on to further lead healthy lives. A successful recovery depends on your will to seek help and the kind of treatment plan and the rehab center that is the option that is right for you.
Crack addiction cannot be cured easily. For treatment to be effective, you have to commit fully to the process. You can receive support from health experts, friends, and family, but you must also manage your motivation so that you do not have to go through the harrowing experience of relapse and repeated withdrawal.
Additionally, a treatment plan that is tailored to your specific circumstances, medical history, and personality will be more effective. When the right treatment plan is not assigned to addicts, treatment often fails. You must eliminate cravings, return to a normal routine, and maintain a sober lifestyle in order to get sober. Relapsing happens. Many addicts who successfully recover have experienced a relapse.
A medically supervised detox is intended to remove cocaine from your body in a way that is safe and comfortable. It is the best way to detox, even though you will experience some difficult symptoms.
You will be examined and interviewed about your medical history, addiction state, and tolerance level while in detox. You may be weaned off the drug gradually until you reach total abstinence, according to the severity of your addiction and your body’s capacity. As previously mentioned, taking you off crack cocaine cold turkey and monitoring your progress may be the best option in milder cases.
Are You Ready to Detox from Crack?
If you or a loved one is in an active crack cocaine addiction, and are ready to beat crack cocaine withdrawal symptoms, call the medical assisted detox expert team with Better Wellness Group to beat crack cocaine addiction and detox from the drug, once and for all!