Table of Contents
Cocaine is well-known not only in America but all over the world. Why? One, it is the most common form of substance abuse. Two, it has the most destructive effect. But how long does cocaine stay in your body?
The effect of cocaine ranges from minor symptoms to extreme complications.
According to the National Institute on Drug, it is responsible for almost half a million emergency room cases. Also, it is the 3rd most common drug found in high schools. It proves why it is the highest medically reviewed among other illicit drugs.
Some say cocaine is extremely addictive. The possibility of overdose is inevitable. It affects the mental health of a person and puts the lives of everyone in danger.
So before things get worse, let us understand cocaine addiction. Find out how long does cocaine stay in your body. Know the effects of using cocaine. Learn the drug screens needed. And the best treatment to beat addiction.
Facts About Cocaine
Before we dig deeper about cocaine, let us understand more about it. Recognize how long cocaine stays in your system. Look for the truth about it, and abolish cocaine addiction for yourself and others.
It is a stimulant with a scientific name of benzoylmethylecgonine.
Other Names for Cocaine
It is also called coke, blow, yayo, 8-ball, and snow.
Side effects of cocaine
Cocaine abuse has the following side effects:
- appetite and weight loss
- sexual impotence
- reproductive damage
- causes congenital disabilities
If a male user impregnates a female, there is a high possibility of cocaine-related abnormalities with the baby.
Cocaine is a party substance.
Coke is very popular in social settings. It makes a user feel euphoric, confident, and social. The stimulating effect speeds up thought process. Therefore, the user becomes more talkative and expressive.
Cocaine is extremely addicting.
The symptoms and effects of cocaine overdose are very prominent and dangerous. Its addictive potential is dependent on numerous factors, including the ingestion method. Still, the fact remains that cocaine use sets you up for a lifetime of physical and psychological dependence.
What makes cocaine so dangerous?
This drug has a severe impact on the nervous system and brain.
It increases levels of dopamine in a part of the brain that is related to rewards and control of movement. Dopamine is supposed to transmit messages between cells, come back to the cell that released it, and shut off the communication between these nerve cells, but after using cocaine this is not what happens.
Cocaine prevents dopamine from going back to the cells that released it and stops normal communication between these cells. The amount of dopamine that stays built up in the areas where it shouldn’t be causes changes in behavior, which leads to violence, taking stronger doses of drugs to stay high as they were before. But technically, that is almost impossible because the part of the brain related to rewards has lost its sensitivity to dopamine after using this stimulant.
Cocaine is costly
A substance addict spends more on the drug than any necessities. They neglect the basic needs of man, to get their daily dose.
Cocaine is fast-acting
Coke mainly acts on the Central Nervous System. It produces a quick yet intense feeling of joy & euphoria. The effect lasts up to 15 minutes to 1 hour then they crash. Later they experience the feeling of dullness, sluggishness, or even depression.
These are just some must-know facts about coke. There is more you need to know, like how long does it take to feel effects and how long does cocaine stay in your system.
How Long Does Cocaine Take To Feel Effects
There are different ways to administer coke – smoking, injecting, taken orally, or snorting. The way you have it affects how long both the duration and intensity of the high.
Snorting coke produces a relatively slow onset of the high. It may last from 15 to 30 minutes. On the other hand, smoking results in more immediate effects. It may last for 5 to 10 minutes.
Being under the influence of it makes you feel perfect. It gives you feelings of pleasure, confidence, and energy beyond your imagination. The euphoric high usually lasts up to 30 minutes. It gives you the feeling of hyper-stimulated, invincible, less sleepy, mentally alert, more talkative, and sexually aroused.
However, a crash immediately follows a high. It causes anxiety and tension, depression, agitation, and exhaustion. The quick cycle makes coke addicting. Right after cocaine use, expect the following physical effects:
- constricted blood vessels
- dilated pupils
- faster breathing
- altered vital signs: increased heart rate and blood pressure, and rise in body temperature
The sudden behavior change depends on the dosage and route. Be observant. It comes in handy when you suspect someone of using it.
How To Detect Cocaine In Your Body
Metabolites are a necessary factor when detecting cocaine addiction. It refers to the body’s way of breaking down substances for use or excretion. Cocaine metabolites are leftovers or byproducts of metabolic action.
Therefore, it is possible to trace cocaine metabolites. It is a strong indicator if someone used the substance or not.
Different Screening For Cocaine Abuse
According to the Institute on Drug Abuse, there are different drug tests to detect substance abuse. Cocaine is traced in the following screenings:
This type of test is the least likely to be used. It requires more time and more specialized equipment. Also, it detects cocaine metabolites for the shortest amount of time. Moreover, it is more expensive than other tests used.
Hair tests are more common than blood testing. It is usually reserved for government jobs. Even jobs requiring a heavy machinery operation, lifeguards, and childcare undergo this screening.
For hair testing, every half-inch of hair is essential. This length contains 30 days of information already.
This screening requires less advanced technology and equipment, unlike blood and hair. Saliva testing is often used in at-home drug kits. It detects system cocaine metabolites longer than blood screening can.
The most common test is urine drug screenings. Plus, it is a type of test that is fast, cheap, and easy. Cocaine urine screening can be done in both at-home kits and lab-processed.
Now we know how cocaine can be detected in the body. The next thing you should know is how long cocaine stays in your system.
How Long Does Cocaine Stay In Your System
We all know that cocaine is fast-acting, but how long does it stay in your body? Drug Abuse mentioned that coke is dependent on many factors. Here is a timeline layout of what to expect.
12-24 Hours After Last Use
It has a short half-life. Some users may be in the clear after the first 12-24 hours. It is accurate for saliva & blood tests, but not with urine exams. Sometimes it fails to detect metabolites if drug use is limited. A heavy user fails drug screening in the first 12-24 hours no matter the form used.
1-4 Days After Last Use
In urine tests, 1-4 days after last use is a normal range for most users. But it depends on some factors like the history of use.
However, there is a downside to urine screenings. It is easy to deceive. Users buy detox drinks and fake urine samples. Add to that, at-home test kits are easier to fake. In this situation, hair tests are preferable. It has a lesser possibility of showing false negatives.
4-90 Days After Last Use
The hair test is the only drug screening to find metabolites after four days of use. But for heavy users, urine tests produce positive results for up to two weeks.
Usually, hair drug screening requires one and a half-inch of hair. This length of hair detects the substance for 90 days. Although not every user shows up positive for 90 days after use, a heavy user can.
90 Days and Beyond
Hair tests cannot detect metabolites after 90 days. It is usual for the majority of users. Meanwhile, it is up to six months or longer for chronic users.
In a quick view, cocaine metabolites typically show up after last use:
- Blood tests – 2 days
- Saliva testing – 48 hours
- Urine drug screening – 3 days
- Hair testing – months to years.
It differs when it comes to heavy users—positive urine results for up to 2 weeks.
With this information, you now have an idea of how long cocaine is in your system. You have a clue about which type of drug test to use and how accurate it will be.
Accuracy Of Cocaine Drug Testing
As mentioned above, the accuracy of a cocaine drug test is affected by several factors. One reason is the cutoff limit. Without further consideration, it may produce false results.
Contrary to the belief, finding any amount of the drug will come up as positive. But that is not always the scene. False-positive comes up from environmental contamination. Just like when inhaling second-hand marijuana smoke. With this in mind, drug screenings use a cutoff limit.
But what do you mean by cutoff limit? It is the minimum amount of a metabolite needed for a positive result. As an example, a person can have cocaine metabolites in their system but still pass the test.
Having a false positive is a serious matter. Conducting a hair test is not reliable enough to fire someone. Why? Because several police officers tested positive for cocaine. These officers often contact illicit drugs during drug busts, routine arrests, and handling evidence. That is why there is a high likelihood of some metabolites appearing in their system.
Although it seems like it only applies to the police, but not, a rough estimate of 90% of dollar bills in circulation contains detectable amounts of cocaine. Coke users roll paper bills to use as straws to snort the drug.
These facts give you an acceptable reason for having positive or false-positive results. Do not panic. Instead, wait for the instructions of the authority of what to do next.
Factors Affecting Detection Time Of Cocaine
Determining the exact detection window for how long cocaine can stay in the system is quite hard. The length of time it remains in your body depends on various factors. The body mass, metabolism, and hydration levels are some of them.
If you wanted to get a loved one check for drug abuse, consider the detection time.
Frequency and Potency
Drug abuse 2016 says, the more used cocaine per session, the longer the benzoylecgonine metabolite remains. Therefore, it can be detected. Moreover, the purity level of the drug affects how quickly the elimination of benzoylecgonine from the body.
Alcohol and Caffeine Consumption
The statement alcohol binds cocaine and impedes its excretion is a fact. Caffeine has the same effects as alcohol. So, drinking while in cocaine sessions makes the drug more addicting.
Fatty tissues store benzoylecgonine. Cocaine users with higher levels of body fat accumulate drugs in their fatty tissue. That is why cocaine stays in your system longer.
Being dehydrated keeps the drug to stay in your system longer. Drinking water helps speed up the excretion of cocaine metabolites. Thus, it aids in addiction treatment.
People who are active and have a higher metabolic rate excretes cocaine faster. Staying active is just one treatment for overcoming cocaine addiction.
The method of taking coke is another factor that affects detection time. Snorting, smoking, and injecting are proven influential. For example, the faster the drug is absorbed into the bloodstream, the shorter the detection window. So, smoking or injecting cocaine leaves your body faster than snorting it.
Getting someone tested for cocaine needs a lot of consideration. These factors affect the accuracy and answer the question of how long does cocaine stay in your system. Call us for assistance. Get help assistance commonly used for cocaine addiction treatment.
How to get Cocaine Out Of your System
There are many claims on lessening the drug stay in your system. Most people believe that flush out is the instant method. You may drink lots of water or take a detox pill. Some say eliminating alcohol and caffeine helps. Others consume fresh fruit high in antioxidants and take natural herbs instead.
However, the National Institute on Drug Abuse does not support it. None of these claims have been substantiated under scientific conditions. The best way is to stop cocaine use. Allow your body time to metabolize. In 12 hours, you have eliminated the substance already. Meanwhile, chronic users need to go to the treatment center.
Get Help You Need
Are you concerned about your loved one? Do you think you have long cocaine stay in your system? Have a kit for a drug test used. If it results in a positive, get help.
People who use cocaine regularly require a consistent and long-term solution. Start by detoxing – get rid of the substance. Seek counseling and medical therapy.
Regular use of cocaine leads to withdrawal symptoms. Expect fatigue, mood changes, sleep problems, and increased appetite. A heavy user may have severe symptoms.
Also, obtain treatment for mental health. Some experience depression. Look for a treatment center or join a support group. It is proven to decrease the chances of relapse. If you know anyone who needs help, you may contact us.
Now you finally understand the effects of cocaine on the body. With this information, you know how long coke stays in your system. You know how to deal with it. Get the right screening test. Support someone you love as they fight the battle against cocaine addiction.