It is always best to seek help for stimulant abuse as soon as a problem is identified. Stimulants can become addictive without much use and the addiction only deepens as the drug use continues. The long-term effects of stimulant abuse are very serious and can make beating the addiction a very difficult process. Everyone reacts to drugs differently, but certain long-term side effects are common:
- High blood pressure
- Heart failure
- Compulsive behavior
- Weight loss
Since most stimulants affect the release of neurotransmitters in the brain, abuse can disrupt this fragile system and cause lasting cognitive effects. When the brain is constantly flooded with dopamine, it becomes used to getting this huge reward on a regular basis and over time it will fundamentally change the way the brain works.
When an addict finally decides to seek help and attempt to quit a stimulant, the brain has a hard time coping without the drug and it will resist any attempt to get off the drug. It can take anywhere from a couple of weeks to several months for the brain to begin to learn how to function properly without the drug. In the case of meth addiction, former users are often depressed for up to a year because their brain has an extremely limited ability to find pleasure without the intense high of using meth.
Even if a drug user is willing to accept help for their addiction, it is difficult to cope with the withdrawal symptoms and not relapse. Some people combat this by choosing to stay in a rehab facility for several months so they are not tempted by the ability to obtain the drug. If you would like to learn more about long-term side effects and treatment programs, call now and speak with one of our trained specialists.
Stimulants, sometimes called “uppers”, describe a broad class of psychoactive drugs that include (but are not limited to) cocaine, methamphetamine, nicotine, caffeine, and MDMA, and each of these drugs can produce a variety of stimulant drug side effects. Stimulants help enhance brain activity, improving alertness, attention, and wakefulness. They work by changing the way nerve cells send messages to each other. Stimulants do this by controlling the amount of neurotransmitters released by the nerve cells. Many stimulants cause a buildup of dopamine in the brain causing increased euphoria and pleasure. Stimulants have been used for years to help treat ADHD, narcolepsy, and obesity, but the intense euphoria creates high potential for abuse. When a person becomes addicted to a stimulant, seeking outside help is often the best option.
Short- term stimulant drug side effects include:
- Feelings of tremendous joy
- Decreased appetite
- Wakefulness, alertness
- Higher blood pressure
- Increased heart rate
Taking large doses of stimulants can be extremely dangerous and harmful to the body and can quickly lead to addiction. Both prescription and street forms of stimulants are abused around the world. Common pharmaceutical forms of stimulants include Ritalin and Adderall. The most popular stimulant street drugs are cocaine and methamphetamine. All of these drugs have a high potential for abuse and it is best to seek professional help if you believe you might have a problem with one of them.
Since any addictive substance can create cravings and withdrawal symptoms when the drug is withheld, the individual finds it difficult or impossible to stop abusing the drug on their own. In most cases, they can’t tolerate the symptoms and feel they need the drug in order to function normally. At this point, it is time to help the individual recognize and admit that there is a problem and seek treatment before it is too late, because some of the stimulant drug side effects can become dangerous or life-threatening if the addiction has gone on for a prolonged period of time.
Cocaine is an illicit psychoactive drug of the stimulant class, and following repeated abuse, treating the cocaine craving is best done by professionals. Cocaine can be found as a white powder (cocaine hydrochloride) or in rock form as crack cocaine. Common street names for cocaine include coke, blow, rock, and nose candy. People use cocaine by snorting, injecting, and smoking the drug. The high felt from cocaine is produced by the effects the drug has on dopamine receptors in the brain. Cocaine has been abused across the world as a party drug.
According to the Office of National Drug Control Policy:
• Of all illicit drugs, Cocaine is the second most commonly abused in the United States
• There are over two million cocaine users in the United States alone.
• In 2000, 259 metric tons of cocaine were consumed in the United States
• Over $30 billion was spent on cocaine in 2000 in American
• Young adults between 18 and 25 are the most frequent users
Cocaine produces a very short, intense, euphoric high followed by a sharp crash. Many users find that they need to use more and more cocaine to keep the euphoric feeling going and prevent themselves from crashing. At this point, treating the cocaine craving by taking more of the drug is only making the addiction stronger and more dangerous. This habit can lead to cocaine dependence and addiction. Cocaine treatment can be a long and difficult process. There are no serious physical symptoms of cocaine withdrawal, but a user will experience a strong craving for more cocaine. This overwhelming urge to use more of the drug makes cocaine treatment very difficult to complete in some cases. Those trying to quit using cocaine must learn to deal with the constant craving because it can take a significant amount of time for the cravings to go away.
If you would like more information on treating the cocaine craving, call today and one of our team will be pleased to answer your questions or recommend a treatment program designed just for you.