If you are in recovery from cocaine addiction, it is important to know the warning signs of cocaine relapse.
People mistakenly think that because cocaine is a natural plant-based substance that it is not harmful in the way that synthetic drugs are. This is wholly untrue. Although cocaine is derived from the coca plant, it is an extremely potent stimulant.
The euphoric high wanes quickly, so users tend to binge cocaine. This sets them up for acquiring an addiction, as cocaine basically takes over the dopamine production in the brain. Once you are addicted to cocaine, it is a difficult substance use disorder to beat, although very possible. However, cocaine relapse is quite common in the recovery community.
Signs of cocaine abuse and addiction include:
- Weight loss.
- Constant runny nose.
- Hoarse voice.
- Paranoid thinking.
- Getting little sleep.
What Causes a Cocaine Relapse?
A cocaine relapse is a common event and by all means, does not mean the end of your recovery goals. Relapse is simply an interruption in a period of sustained sobriety or abstinence. At least 40%-60% of people in early recovery will indeed experience a relapse.
Because you are dealing with the disease of addiction, it is not easy to override the often unpredictable features of cocaine addiction. Some of the reasons why someone might relapse back to cocaine use include:
- You reconnect with drug users. If you put yourself in the presence of cocaine users, it will become next to impossible to resist joining in.
- You are under stress. When you are stressed out it increases cocaine cravings. This is due to a problem processing stress, which can lead to an OCD-type response.
- Being over-confident. After a month or two of sobriety, it may be tempting to believe you have the cocaine addiction under control. When this happens you become lax with your recovery efforts and start skipping meetings.
- Glamorizing your past cocaine use. After a period of abstinence, you may become bored with your new sober lifestyle and start to romanticize your former cocaine party days.
Signs of an Upcoming Cocaine Relapse
A cocaine relapse doesn’t just happen out of thin air. It may come on slowly over a period of weeks. Some triggers might involve relationship problems, loneliness, boredom, or a significant loss.
Some of the overt signs of an impending relapse might include:
- You revert back to former unhealthy habits.
- You stop talking with your sponsor.
- You hang out with the old crowd.
- You are under a great deal of stress.
- You withdraw socially.
6 Signs a Loved One has Relapsed
If you have a loved one in recovery and notice these signs, it could be that they have returned to cocaine use:
- Increased moodiness. Cocaine can cause mood swings. These can change from a euphoric high to depressive behaviors.
- Not sleeping much. Cocaine stimulates the central nervous system, which can rev up all the nerve activity and make it hard to sleep.
- Increased agitation. If someone who relapsed is binging cocaine, their behavior will be erratic and they will appear agitated.
- Anxiety symptoms. Someone who has relapsed will often display signs of anxiety, such as being nervous, shaky, and irritable.
- Missing work. If the person has been binging cocaine, they may crash and be unable to make it to work.
- Changes in daily routine. A telltale sign of relapse is when someone who has established healthy routines suddenly regresses. They may stop working out, might keep an erratic schedule, and may stop caring about a healthy diet.
How to Recover from a Cocaine Relapse
So, how do you recover from a relapse? The very first thing to do after relapsing is to recognize that sobriety is your only real option. Assuming you want a full and productive life, you must reengage in recovery efforts.
Feelings of shame and guilt often follow a relapse. Do not get stuck in those negative emotions. Learn from the relapse experience, and even do a self-assessment about what triggered it. This can help you fine-tune your new relapse prevention plan.
Don’t beat yourself up if you have relapsed. Relapse is very common in the first six months of recovery. It takes time to practice recovery skills and coping techniques. Relapse happens.
In fact, if you have relapsed you can learn something useful from the experience. You can emerge from this episode stronger than ever. You just need to double down on recovery efforts.
Your loved ones want to see you succeed in recovery. Seek their support and humbly do whatever it takes to reclaim your sobriety as quickly as possible.
Here are some tips to help you get back on your feet:
- Get in touch with your sponsor and talk it through with them. They have been there.
- Get to a meeting. In fact, go daily for at least two weeks.
- Meet with your therapist. Discuss the emotions that may have been present when the relapse happened.
- Return to the healthy routine you had established in recovery.
- Immerse yourself in your sober friendships and sober activities. Staying active and busy is key.
Do You Need to Revisit Addiction Treatment?
In some cases, you may benefit from a refresher course at rehab. This can be either outpatient or inpatient, depending on how fragile your recovery is after the relapse. Rehab can help you shore up your recovery and become motivated again.
Being aware of the telltale signs of cocaine relapse can help you take action right away to thwart the relapse. Get the support you need to remain free of this dangerous drug. Reach out today.
Bodhi Addiction Treatment and Wellness Treats the Whole Person
Bodhi Addiction Treatment and Wellness is a holistically-focused drug and alcohol recovery center. Our expert team blends evidence-based therapies with holistic methods. If you have recently experienced a cocaine relapse and feel you need some structured support, please give our team a call at (877) 328-1968.