Cocaine Withdrawal Timeline: How Long Does It Last?

Cocaine withdrawal can be a long process. Addiction treatment can address the mental health issues underlying cocaine use, but some cocaine withdrawal symptoms can last up to eight or nine months, although they do decrease in intensity during that time.

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Dr. Manish Mishra, MBBS

Medically Reviewed By: Manish Mishra, MBBS


Cocaine abuse takes its toll on your mental health by creating unnatural levels of dopamine to give a high sense of confidence, vitality, and self-worth.

This means that when you stop cocaine substance abuse, many of the withdrawal symptoms are psychological and can take some time to get over, though there are some physical symptoms as well as intense cravings.

The cocaine withdrawal timeline, or how long it takes to withdraw from the effects of cocaine, may be dependent on several factors.

Length Of Cocaine Withdrawal

Cocaine withdrawal can take about eight to nine months, including all the stages from the last use of the drug. Cocaine withdrawal syndrome can be broken down into three distinct stages.

While some withdrawal symptoms are shared, such as strong cravings, the stages themselves have unique levels of intensity and emphasis.

First Stage Of Cocaine Withdrawal

The first stage of the cocaine withdrawal process begins about 24 hours after the last dose of the drug.

Because cocaine is a stimulant drug, you may experience deep depression as well as fatigue and anxiety. Some people will turn to opioids during this period to make themselves sleep.

Also, because cocaine is an appetite suppressant, when you withdraw you tend to experience an increased appetite and desire to eat larger portions at mealtimes. The first stage lasts for about a week.

Second Stage Of Cocaine Withdrawal

Entering the second stage a person feels intense cocaine cravings along with an increase in the intensity of the previous symptoms.

Along with those symptoms, you could experience withdrawal symptoms such as:

  • generalized dissatisfaction
  • mood swings
  • paranoia
  • difficulty concentrating

These symptoms can last for about eight to 10 weeks.

Third Stage Of Cocaine Withdrawal

The final stage can last as long as six months. Fortunately, the intensity of the symptoms described before can decrease over this time.

But, you are likely to experience a generally low mood and cocaine cravings during this time, while your dopamine levels adjust to not being on the drug.

Factors That Influence The Cocaine Withdrawal Timeline

Many factors can influence the cocaine withdrawal time. One is the degree and length of time of cocaine use.

A person who has experienced the effects of snorting cocaine for long periods of time will likely experience acute withdrawal and take longer to withdraw.

In such cases, you should consider a medical detox program for withdrawal. Inpatient or outpatient detox programs can help with some of the symptoms of cocaine withdrawal.

For example, if you experience suicidal thoughts during the depression period, you are in a safe, controlled environment in a detox center.

You may also be able to receive antipsychotic or antidepressant medication, such as benzodiazepines, in a setting that can monitor their side effects.

Cocaine detox can also help shorten the withdrawal timeline by giving you regular healthy meals and vitamin and mineral supplements.

Treatment Programs For Cocaine Withdrawal And Addiction

Treatment programs for cocaine drug use and substance use disorder (addiction) can include detox programs or evidence-based recovery programs.

Quality rehab centers can give you or your loved one treatment options. They can also help you discover what you need to address drug addiction, including support groups, general healthcare, detox, therapy and more.

Find Cocaine Addiction Treatment At Bedrock Recovery Center

At Bedrock Recovery Center based in Massachusetts, we know how much willpower it takes to get through cocaine withdrawal.

That’s why we have specific programs for cocaine substance abuse that take you from detox to aftercare using such evidence-based models as cognitive behavioral therapy.

Call our treatment center helpline today and let us design an individualized treatment plan for you.

  1. National Institute on Drug Abuse — Cocaine Research Report: How is Cocaine Addiction Treated?
  2. U.S. National Library of Medicine: MedlinePlus — Cocaine Withdrawal
  3. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration — Detoxification and Substance Abuse Treatment
  4. World Health Organization — Clinical Guidelines for Withdrawal Management and Treatment of Drug Dependence in Closed Settings: Chapter 4, Withdrawal Management

Written by Bedrock Recovery Center Editorial Team

© 2024 Bedrock Recovery Center | All Rights Reserved

* This page does not provide medical advice.

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