What are the symptoms of a cocaine comedown?

Cocaine is an extremely addictive drug, both physically and behaviorally, that is derived from the coca plant from South America. Originally used for medicinal purposes, cocaine became a popular drug of choice for illicit users. With its highly addictive properties, cocaine is considered a controlled substance labeled as a Schedule II drug in the United States.

Although technically a stimulant, it is generally used medicinally for anesthesia in hospital settings for ear, nose, and throat surgeries. Outside of this, however, it is a common street drug consumed in several forms such as inhaled powder, rock form known as crack, which is smoked, or even used as an injection.

The rapid onset of cocaine gives the user an almost instant dose of dopamine, your body’s “feel good chemicals,” resulting in a feeling of euphoria. Tragically it only takes one dose to become addicted for many individuals, with the onset of craving beginning in just over an hour commonly. This craving is known as “cocaine comedown” and can be very intense.


Coming down from a cocaine high, users often have feelings similar to depression. After being blissfully happy, they suddenly become lethargic and experience physical discomfort.  Some people relay this to feeling hungover from drinking, but more intense, with brain fog and difficulty functioning. There are three basic stages of cocaine comedown listed below.

Stage 1

Severe withdrawal symptoms will begin to manifest, also known as cocaine comedown. Feelings of insomnia, anxiety, and having little to no appetite are very common, along with mood swings and anxiety. Vertigo is common, along with feeling like you are hungover from a night of drinking. The cravings to use cocaine can start as soon as one hour after your last dose of the drug.

Stage 2

The brain fog can be intense, with difficulty in thinking straight and attention deficit. Users likely feel depressed and become fatigued. Anger and mood swings are not uncommon in this stage. Hypersensitivity to light, sounds, and movement aggravates the symptoms.

Stage 3

Now the severe cravings begin and can be overwhelming for many users. Many cocaine addicts have such strong withdrawal symptoms that even after weeks and months, the temptation to use cocaine is so strong that they will often relapse. The original symptoms of physical discomfort, along with behavioral issues, may either increase or decrease, as it depends on how the individual responds to the symptoms of withdrawal.

Important Self Care

Understanding the self-care that you will need is very important to your recovery from cocaine comedown and addiction. Patience is a big factor in the healing process, no matter if you manage this challenge at home or seek medical guidance. Eating a nutrient-rich diet of grains, proteins, and vegetables will help you recover physically along with staying hydrated. Staying busy with a hobby or light chores will keep your mind engaged and your hands busy. If you are not able to fight the cravings alone, there is no shame in contacting a medical professional to help in your fight against addiction.


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