There are many misconceptions out there about the use of alcohol and cocaine together. People believe that taking both can boost the high from the cocaine while avoiding the withdrawal effects. Simply put, this is not true at all. The use of alcohol is harmful to your health and the same applies to the use of cocaine.
There are many dangers of mixing cocaine and alcohol. It may even have lethal results. Read on to find out the effects of mixing the two and what hazards they present to you.
Effects of Cocaine
Cocaine is an alkaloid that can be purified from the coca leaf, which grows in South America. This drug has been in existence for centuries and was once used as a topical anesthetic in the late 1800s. It is available in two different chemical forms. There is a water-soluble powder that is usually used to make a solution for injections. There is also another fat-soluble freebase form. Cocaine has both stimulant and anesthetic effects.
The high from cocaine comes on fast and disappears within a few minutes to several hours. The effect of cocaine on the consumer depends on several factors. These factors include the amount used and the form it was taken in and whether it was snorted, smoked, swallowed, or injected.
Common effects of cocaine consumption include:
- A boost of dopamine in the brain
- Increased energy
- Mental alertness
- Increased sensitivity to touch, sounds, and lights
- Mood swings
- Restlessness and shaking
- Increased temperature
- Raised heart rate and blood pressure
- Heart problems
- Panic attacks
- Drug tolerance
- Dependence causing the use of higher dosages and frequent use
These are just a few of the possible side effects that can happen when you take cocaine. Some side effects can cause people to take the drug more often while others will affect your physical health, mental health, or income. They have a dangerous effect on the body and can change the heart’s rhythm, causing blood pressure to increase. These effects also drag the user deeper into addiction and dependency.
Effects of Alcohol
Alcohol is a type of drug that is considered to be a depressant. It changes your brain in many ways. It affects your:
Alcohol can be extremely addictive. Long-term alcohol use can affect your body as well. Binge drinking and drinking heavily for a sustained duration can cause damage to your vital organs, including the:
Using alcohol in uncontrolled and excess amounts can also lead to:
- Heart rhythm problems
- High blood pressure
- Heart muscle damage
- Liver inflammation
- Liver cirrhosis
- Fatty liver
- Pancreas inflammation
These are all life-threatening side-effects that have been known to ruin lives and cause deaths. They cause the health of the consumer to deteriorate. Over time, they are unable to coordinate their movements or make proper judgments. The use of alcohol impairs motor control, and driving under the influence has been a leading cause of death on the roads.
The Dangers of Mixing Cocaine and Alcohol
The chemical reaction between cocaine and alcohol leads to the creation of new elements. These are known as metabolites, and one of the powerful ones is cocaethylene. It is known to be more potent than either alcohol or cocaine alone. It adds to the toxicity levels in the heart, liver, and other significant organs. It is more potent than cocaine and alcohol and represents the powerful elements in both drugs combined.
Cocaethylene remains in the body for a longer duration than cocaine. Its toxic effect is also known to last longer. Alcohol slows the removal of ethylbenzoylecgonine from the kidneys, which raises cocaine blood levels.
It is very likely to have a sudden stroke when you are mixing both cocaine and alcohol. Cocaine is known to add to the risk of a sudden stroke by:
- Causing vasoconstriction, which shrinks blood vessels and limits the flow of blood in the body
- Increasing blood pressure and heart rate
- Causing sudden bleeding of the brain
- Increasing the likelihood of blood clots
Cocaethylene staying in the body for much longer also raises the risk of a stroke, even among people with no other risk factors.
According to research, alcohol leads to an increased craving for cocaine. As such, it becomes much more difficult to stop using cocaine or alcohol. People using the mixture will keep drinking to keep the effect alive for much longer while keeping withdrawal effects out of their minds.
Cocaine and cocaethylene increase stimulant effects in the body. They do this by raising the levels of serotonin and dopamine in the brain. The effect also blocks the reuptake of these chemicals and can lead to:
- Panic attacks
Heart and liver toxicity are increased with a rising level of cocaine and cocaethylene in the body. These have the danger of causing sudden heart-related problems, including heart attacks. The risk increases for users who already have heart-related problems.
Mixing alcohol and cocaine has been found to increase someone’s risk for:
- Heart attacks
- Sudden stroke
- Liver damage
- Sudden death
- Drug cravings
- Rising body temperatures
People who use alcohol and cocaine are also more likely to have injuries or other reactions. They will visit the emergency room more often due to the injuries they inflict on themselves or incur as a result of carelessness during periods of cocaine and alcohol use.
How Long Do Alcohol and Cocaine Remain in the Body System?
Liver enzymes and plasma in the blood break cocaine into benzoylecgonine and ecgonine methyl ester. These are eliminated from the body via urine. The metabolites are still detectable in the urine for six hours. In the blood, cocaine remains for two days and is still present in the hair for many months.
When cocaine is mixed with alcohol, the cocaethylene can stay around for days or weeks. The length of time that it remains in the body depends on how it was consumed and how much of it was used. The functional levels of your pancreas, kidney, and liver also determine the duration these drugs remain in your body systems.
Cocaine and Alcohol Use During Pregnancy
Of course, the use of cocaine and alcohol during pregnancy can have adverse effects on the fetus and the mother. They also have lasting health consequences for both. The dangers are increased when the mother uses both alcohol and cocaine at the same time. A combination of the drugs can lead to:
- Low birth weight
- Premature birth
- Developmental delays that are associated with learning, emotions, attention, and physical well-being.
Why People Combine Cocaine and Alcohol
Many people believe that alcohol can control the anxiety and withdrawal issues that kick in when the effects of cocaine fade away. However, alcohol has been known to cause more significant cravings for cocaine, leading to a cycle of misusing both.
Finding Help: Granite Recovery Centers
If your loved one has a problem with cocaine and alcohol, reaching out to friendly help is a wise move. A treatment center is usually the best place to go as it is designed to help with recovery.
The recovery process is made more comfortable and more bearable for all the patients. There is strong social support, and your progress is improved by interacting with other recovering drug addicts. You will also have access to experienced mentors who have dedicated their lives to treating addiction patients. They will give you the best advice and ensure that you are on the right path to recovery.
The alcohol rehab program is designed for recovering alcoholics and provides in-depth recovery programs meant for them. It gets the recovering alcoholic to slowly heal from the effects of alcohol use and get better mentally, physically, and psychologically. Fighting off long-lasting addiction and extended drug use can be difficult and even more challenging without the correct kind of support.
You will be taught all about alcohol abuse, the triggers of alcoholism, and symptoms of overdose. The detox process for alcohol abuse is also well established and leaves no trace of the drug in your system. It saves your liver and your kidney from having to bear an unnecessary burden that deteriorates their functionality and effectiveness over time. Granite Recovery Centers provides medical detoxification for people who do not need immediate medical intervention, are not a danger to themselves, and are capable of self-evacuation in the event of an emergency.
The cocaine addiction treatment and rehab options are also available at Granite Recovery Centers. Recovering cocaine users receive a warm welcome to the center, and a timeline is established for treatment and detox. The dangers of mixing cocaine and alcohol are also taught.
Cocaine users who have been mixing the drug with alcohol will get more specialized treatment with more support. The mixing of the drug has more potent effects that are known to linger around in the body for much longer. As such, the patients will require a more specialized form of treatment to ensure that the detox process is effective.
Counseling is also part of the program at Granite Recovery Centers, and it has been designed to provide the patients with the moral support they need to push through. Drugs are powerful, and their effects linger in the mind for much longer than they do in the body. Mental recovery is an integral part of our treatment program. Having a positive mental outlook is also required once you leave the treatment program.
In counseling, patients recovering from the use of cocaine and alcohol get to learn about the drugs’ effects on their brains. They see how the drugs mix up the release of chemicals in their brains and how this affects their dependency levels. As such, the recovering addicts can hold off the feeling of going back to their drug habit.
Social support from other recovering addicts is always available for the patients, making their recovery more comfortable. The social support ensures that they can relate to others’ experiences, and with this, they will be able to become stronger once they recover.
Taking a mixture of drugs such as alcohol and cocaine is dangerous and toxic to the body. Visit us or reach out to us through our website for more information about our program. We will be happy to get you started on a recovery program for your addiction and carefully monitor your progress as you turn away from drug use and dependency. Improve your health with the best rehab and drug recovery center. We are always open and welcome patients looking for recovery and a way to save their lives. Wellness is our top priority, which is why we have the best counselors and doctors at our programs.