Withdrawal Timeline and Symptoms for Cocaine Abuse

You might be surprised to discover that cocaine withdrawal and detox is not as intense or challenging as withdrawal from alcohol, prescription opioids, or other illicit drugs.

That said, cocaine is a strong and powerfully addictive controlled substance that triggers a variety of withdrawal symptoms if you stop using the drug after a prolonged period of abuse.

If you develop a cocaine addiction – clinically diagnosed as stimulant use disorder – you may encounter a range of adverse withdrawal symptoms if you attempt to moderate or discontinue use of cocaine. The more you learn about the cocaine withdrawal process, the more robustly you can navigate detox without relapsing.



Cocaine withdrawal is the body’s physical and psychological reaction to the absence of a substance to which it has become accustomed. There are many factors that influence the duration and severity of cocaine withdrawal symptoms, including:

  • Severity of your stimulant use disorder
  • Duration of cocaine abuse
  • Extent of cocaine abuse

You can expect cocaine withdrawal to unfold over the following phases:

  1. Cocaine crash
  2. Continuing cocaine withdrawal
  3. Cocaine withdrawal extinction



If you have been abusing cocaine long-term, you can expect the initial crash phase of withdrawal to kick in within a few hours to a few days of last using the drug.

This phase of cocaine withdrawal is characterized by the following:

  • Intense depression
  • Exhaustion
  • Fatigue
  • Anxiety
  • Hopelessness
  • Suicidal ideation



Once the first slump of the cocaine crash dissipates, your mood and overall functioning should start improving.

During continuing cocaine withdrawal, though, you may experience an inability to feel joy or pleasure – a condition known as anhedonia. At the same time, you may also feel irritated and bored, as well as experiencing powerful cravings for cocaine. Your chance of relapse is highest during this challenging phase of cocaine withdrawal.

Recovery will start taking place more fully once you have navigated continuing cocaine withdrawal.



Mood swings may continue for months after stopping the use of cocaine. Cravings for cocaine are liable to persist for six months or so.

By this stage, though, the worst is behind you and the signs of cocaine withdrawal should have completely dissipated.



These are some of the most commonly reported symptoms of cocaine withdrawal:

  • Lack of motivation
  • Extreme lethargy
  • Hostility
  • Reduced libido
  • Intense cravings for cocaine
  • Tremors
  • Chills
  • Irritability
  • Agitation
  • Generalized discomfort
  • Slowed activity
  • Troubling dreams
  • Muscle aches
  • Physical and mental exhaustion
  • Increased appetite
  • Anhedonia
  • Problems with focus
  • Headaches
  • Sleepiness
  • Paranoia
  • Suicidal ideation

How about more severe cocaine withdrawal effects?



SAMHSA reports that cocaine withdrawal seizures are a risk for some users during detox. There is also a danger that current cocaine users might develop seizures.



For mild and moderate stimulant use disorders, withdrawal symptoms could dissipate in just 24 hours.

More severe cocaine use disorders may involve withdrawal symptoms lasting for up to 4 days.

The acute cocaine withdrawal symptoms should be gone within 10 days, even in the case of severe cocaine addiction.

Detoxing from cocaine is typically best performed in a medically-supervised setting. The powerful nature of cocaine cravings means you can benefit from emotional support on hand around-the-clock. This will minimize your chances of an early relapse before your recovery gets traction.

One of the most dangerous side effects that manifests during detox for cocaine is a heightened risk of suicide. Severe depression and dramatic mood swings during early cocaine recovery causes some people to consider suicide.


Cocaine Detox Program at Gratitude Lodge

Cocaine withdrawal might be unpleasant, but it’s seldom life-threatening. While there is usually no requirement for medication-assisted treatment, a medically-managed detox allows you to undergo the cocaine withdrawal process with clinical and emotional care on hand.

With opioid use disorder, heroin use disorder, and alcohol use disorder, there are FDA-approved medications for alleviating cravings and withdrawal symptoms. This form of medication-assisted treatment does not currently exist for the treatment of stimulant use disorder. Research in this area is ongoing, with both naltrexone and buprenorphine showing potential benefits, according to some small-scale animal studies.

Here at Gratitude Lodge, we offer a variety of outpatient programs for cocaine addiction, including:

  • 30-day inpatient programs
  • IOPs (intensive outpatient programs)

Whichever degree of treatment intensity makes the right fit for your cocaine addiction, you can unpack the psychological component of cocaine addiction at one of our pet-friendly treatment centers located in:

  • San Diego
  • Newport Beach
  • Long Beach

Counseling and psychotherapy like CBT (cognitive behavioral therapy) will help you to identify what causes you to use cocaine, and you’ll also learn how to use healthy coping mechanisms to in place of stimulant abuse.

Place your trust in Gratitude Lodge and let us help you transition smoothly into sober living cocaine-free. Kickstart your recovery today by calling 888-861-1658.