Thursday September 21st 2017

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How to stop taking cocaine

Are you ready to face a cocaine habit?

Many people do not realize that cocaine is a highly addictive drug that directly targets the central nervous system. Cocaine’s addiction liability is one of the reasons that it has been scheduled as a narcotic, illegal drug in the U.S. And  people who use cocaine frequently are at seriously high risk of physical and psychological dependence.

So, how do you stop using cocaine? Can you just quit on your own? What happens once you stop taking cocaine? Find out what to expect after you stop a cocaine habit and how to safely do so here. Then, we invite your questions and comments about quitting cocaine at the end.

Can I just stop taking cocaine?

It depends.

In general, it is advisable to consult a medical professional before quitting cocaine. There are many factors involved when deciding on a course for cessation, the major one being your level of dependence and/or addiction. If you are highly addicted to cocaine, the answer to this question would be, “No,” as severe cravings are very likely to occur. Heavy users find it difficult to just stop, as they battle the strong urge to use to relieve the symptoms.

If you are an occasional user, it might be more likely that you can just stop taking cocaine, however, keep in mind that you will need to modify behaviors and be aware of triggers in order to avoid future use. So how should you get off cocaine? Let’s first explore what happens in the brain and body after you quit using cocaine.

What happens when you stop taking cocaine?

If you’ve been taking cocaine for a longer period of time, chances are that your body has gotten used to its presence and will protest when you stop. Why?  Cocaine works on the brain as a stimulant and causes the body to over-produce depressant effects in order to balance out. So once you stop using cocaine, these effects become noticeable. And when cocaine is no longer in the system, the central nervous system’s adapted functions only gradually normalize over time.

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During the period when cocaine starts to exit the body – also known as withdrawal – you can expect to experience a set of symptoms commonly referred to a withdrawal symptoms. After a period of regular use, the body needs time to “figure out” how to regain homeostasis. So, when you stop taking cocaine… symptoms follow.

Side effects when you stop taking cocaine

Getting off cocaine is a good thing, a great decision!,  but it comes with a set of adverse side effects. The common side effects that occur when you quit taking cocaine can include:

  • depression
  • disturbed sleeping
  • fatigue
  • feeling agitated
  • increased appetite
  • slowing down of activity

Even though the effects are not physically tormenting, they should not be underestimated since they can still cause cravings and provoke relapse. This is why experts strongly recommended you consider emotional-psychological support during the first week or so of quitting cocaine until the side effects wear off.

Stop taking cocaine suddenly

Suddenly stopping cocaine is certainly not pleasant for your body or mental health. In fact, this method can increase the likelihood of relapse, as side effects can be more severe and intense. Instead, get your body physically and mentally ready to cope with the absence of cocaine by means of slowly tappering down your dose. However, there are some cases when quitting cocaine cold turkey may be best.

Stop taking cocaine cold turkey

Heavy users may want to consider a cold turkey cocaine detox if there are not other viable options available for a controlled taper. However, going cold turkey off cocaine can provoke the so-called “crash period,” which is manifested by accompanied by a strong craving for more cocaine. When severe cravings occur, people often reach for other abusive substances or can even consider extreme ideas like suicide. This is why medical supervision is crucial during cocaine detox.

How do I stop taking cocaine?

Consult a medical professional such as a medical doctor, psychiatrist, or an addiction therapist (licensed psychologist) before you try to quit cocaine. While it is possible to quit without professional assistance, doing it on your own isn’t recommended, as it can be dangerous due to unstable mental health issues. A doctor can determine if a treatment facility may be best for you, or not, and will advise you on how to address withdrawal symptoms and be most comfortable during the process.

How to stop taking cocaine safely

Simply, the best way to stop taking cocaine safely is to seek medical assistance. Medical and mental health professionals can help you determine what is the safest way for your individual case, as all cases are unique and depend on a number of factors such as:

  • age
  • co-occuring disorders
  • general health
  • gender
  • medical history
  • level of dependence

If you are determined to quit cocaine on your own, stay surrounded by close and positive people. And seek help though support groups, psychotherapy, and/or people who your trust.

How to stop taking crack questions

In this article, we tried to cover the most common ways people quit cocaine and deal with the associated withdrawal symptoms. If you have additional questions about how to stop taking cocaine, feel free to ask us in the comments section below. We will try to respond to you personally and promptly.

Reference Sources: NIH: Drug Facts on Cocaine
Medline Plus: Cocaine withdrawal

Photo credit: Nemo

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24 Responses to “How to stop taking cocaine
11:28 am September 21st, 2015

How does my friend quite smoking crack she wants her life back but needs it even to get outta bed???

4:18 pm September 23rd, 2015

Hello Tucker. She can detox on her own without serious risks, but staying sober is the difficult part. She will need structured recovery treatment to help her deal with cravings and triggers that can be expected to hit hard in the following period, as well as occasionally in the future. If withdrawal symptoms are too harsh don’t hesitate to take her to the hospital. As for the period that follows, she will need to join a therapy group or attend counseling sessions to learn how to cope with all the challenges that await ahead and stay sober.

8:42 am January 17th, 2016

I started occasional cocaine use in February/March of 2015. Am I considered a chronic user? i need, want, and am going to stop. I’m afraid of the physical side affects and what will happen to me. I do take blood pressure medicine. I know I will need support through this although I’m afraid to go to a group as someone might know me, but I know I’ll need help.

12:06 am November 18th, 2016

iv tried your other sites but got no reply please help with advice i have been injecting rock and heroin at least 4 times a week. i have got a last chance alcohol detox. my liver and kidneys are not well due to my anxiety down to the coke? i have got a 70ml methadone script per day & when i get out of detox i will stick to it. after 20 odd years im ready but am realy scared the anxiety wont stop. iv got no chance of any sort of benzo script. what can i do? please reply thanks. E

Lydia @ Addiction Blog
12:52 pm December 22nd, 2016

Hi Ian. Call the helpline you see on the website to speak with a trusted treatment consultant.

8:24 pm January 1st, 2017

Hi guys,
I know nothing about drugs and hope I can find some help here.
My neighbor’s adult son has started to come round our building and cause bother, and I am wondering if his behaviour indicates cocaine use?
This man storms in at all hours of the day and night, though he is not a resident, slamming doors, racing up stairs and so on.
I need to stress here that this is WAY, way beyond any normal noise caused by coming and going. He is of slight build but sounds more like a 300lbs football player, please trust me on that. It’s as if he has power surging through him way beyond his size. I have never heard anyone make so much noise, it’s like something you would hear on a construction site not an apartment building.
I am a young single female and would not be able to intervene if he became violent, and I cannot get advice on what might be behind this but from reading your blog and other sites I am thinking it could be cocaine.
He talks very loudly and excitedly – almost to the point of shouting – while others are having normal conversations.
This usually lasts for about 30 minutes at a time, and resumes following a lull.
The man appears highly agitated and upset – and angry – for no reason, yet on other (rare) occasions comes and goes more or less normally.
On one visit he suddenly started talking about people being decapitated, and out of the blue, through gritted teeth threatened to stab his parent in the head, before continuing his meal as if he had commented on the weather. He was not fooling around or joking on this, trust me.
I could see from the non-reaction of other members of the family there that this sort of outburst is not unusual for them to hear.
Anytime he stays over he doesn’t go to bed but, makes the sort of noise I outlined above until until he leaves, which is at 2am or later. We live in a small town and he doesn’t work the nightshift so I can’t think of where he would be going to, nor do I care about his private business but because of all of this sleep is impossible for the rest of us.
Can someone offer me some advice on whether these are likely symptoms of cocaine use or would it be some other drug?
I am pretty sure alcohol is NOT involved in this case, incidentally.
I don’t want to go into too many details on this person.
All his family know about the way he goes on, and I suspect approaching any of them about this would only make matters worse, particularly for me. A friend of mine is a recovering alcoholic and I know from her that families often ‘normalize’ even the oddest behavior which seems to be what is going on here.
Any comments on this would be welcome guys. I really need some of your expertise here.
I want to have some insights so I can follow up and get this sorted out. Thanks in advance.


6:31 pm February 20th, 2017

hi i want to quit cocaine i usualy do cocaine on weeksends just to party longer…..please help me

Lydia @ Addiction Blog
1:05 pm March 2nd, 2017

Hi Prateek. I suggest that you call the helpline displayed on the site to speak with a trusted treatment consultant who can help you find the best treatment options for you.

7:32 am April 19th, 2017

Hi there. So i’ve been injecting cocaine for about 3 yearrs but stopped when i found i was pregnant however, tnis was hard and stopped about 4 months pregnant. Life was great i had money i was happy until 8 months pregant the creator took her back and i gave birth to my beaurtful stillborn daughter. I startwed using a month and a half after and have been going for the passed 2 months again and i hate where i am headed for. Help me :,,,(

11:07 am April 19th, 2017

Hi Frankie. I am so sorry to hear about your loss. I’ve been through a miscarriage and I still mourn for that little soul. Cocaine is a very powerful drug…and one that requires help to quit. THe cravings can come out of nowhere, even months into sobriety. Have you thought about asking for help from a treatment center? Some states offer help with treatment in the form of vouchers…call your State’s Department of Health and Social Services to learn more. I wish you peace.

12:19 am April 28th, 2017

Hi my boyfriend has recently told me he’s addicticed to cocaine an has been for about a year. Will I be able to help him come off it. As he’s not really confident enough going to therapy groups I’ve looked for some advice online on how to come off it yourself. What would your recommendations be please

9:20 pm May 2nd, 2017

Hi 👋🏻 Haloo have a great day thumbs up 👍🏻

Lydia @ Addiction Blog
5:58 pm May 8th, 2017

Hi Jodie. Call the Cocaine Helpline on 1-888-497-6879 to get in touch with dependable hotline professionals available 24/7. You will be talking to someone knowledgeable about cocaine abuse, rehab and recovery centers who can help you find a cocaine recovery program.

2:50 am June 25th, 2017

i think you have sent from heaven just to help me lydia, i have taken your advices and my wife has seen progress. God bless you for comitting to help us online. i’m sticking to your principles, i’m not trying but do as you have said it.

1:47 pm July 8th, 2017

I use cocaine about twice a week I have been trying to quit I also have a gambling problem it seems like I use cocaine to gamble online poker I will only gamble when I’m using this addiction is destroying my family how I been doing this for about 3 or 4th years how can I quit please I need help

Lydia @ Addiction Blog
5:46 pm July 11th, 2017

Hi Ron. Call the Cocaine Helpline listed here on 1-888-497-6879 to get in touch with dependable hotline professionals available 24/7. You will be talking to someone knowledgeable about cocaine abuse, rehab and recovery centers who can help you find a cocaine recovery program.

9:52 pm August 1st, 2017

Someone I love is doing cocaine they don’t see it as a problem. I knew this person for three years before I knew that they was doing this kind of drug. How do I get him support how do I help him understand why he needs support.
Is there anything I can do for this person

5:24 am August 9th, 2017

Hey guys, I just wanted to let you guys know that there is hope, you can quit cocaine, it is hard at first but the first step is the desire and will to want to quit. I was hesitant to try rehab at first but it wasn’t that bad at all. I stopped going to places that brought on the urge to use cocaine like bars & nightclubs, I quit drinking and other drugs (marijuana & hallucinogens) so I can think on a clear head and I confessed my situation to my friends, workmates, boss and my family so they would understand my reactions during withdrawal and support me through my journey. Rehab isn’t that bad, I see a psychologist and a psychiatrist and I continue going to work and living a regular life while doing rehab. It’s been 11 weeks since I’ve been off cocaine, I’m being treated with drugs for a condition my psychiatrist believes to cause my relapse and so far so good. My advice to anyone is to try to get help, because from my own experience I only got constant relapses after five weeks on abstinence.

Lydia @ Addiction Blog
5:24 pm August 11th, 2017

Hi LKK. You may need to stage an intervention for your friend. I suggest that you look into the CRAFT model for families and interventions. One NGO called Allies in Recovery has some online reading that can help:

4:17 pm August 17th, 2017

Hi Jim. Thanks for your message of hope and sharing your input with other readers. I am sure people searching for answers and motivation in this comments section will find your story inspiring.

2:36 am September 8th, 2017

Hey, guys, I need help with life, I have been injecting Krokodil for about 2 months and I can’t stop, please help me, I’m so scared

Lydia @ Addiction Blog
4:30 pm September 11th, 2017

Hi Mike. Call the helpline you see on the website to get in touch with a trusted treatment consultant.

8:53 pm September 11th, 2017

I am 54 years old and have been using cocaine since i was about 20. I have tried quitting multiple times but it or I never seem to stay clean. I had a quadruple bypass 3 years ago due to diabetes. I have no health insurance. I am so tired of feeling like crap and am on the edge. I have a wonderful wife that i feel i have ruined her life. Nobody knows how difficult it is when the cravings take over and there is nothing i can do about it. I try to fight it but it controls me. I really feel like i will never win this fight. I am so close to giving up on life but i could never do that to my wife. What the hell do i do i hate it. What do you do when that person you hate being around is yourself. 💔

Lydia @ Addiction Blog
12:47 pm September 13th, 2017

Hi John. There’s always a way out, you just need to ask for help. Call the Cocaine Helpline on 1-888-497-6879 to get in touch with dependable hotline professionals available 24/7.

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