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How Cocaine Affects Teeth
When we think of cocaine we may conjure up the 1980s, the decade is known for coke abuse. Although cocaine use was rampant back then, it slid out of favor when the drug trade was more strictly enforced. That’s when prices for the drug shot sky high.
Well, it looks like cocaine is making a comeback. The NIDA reports a 1.6 fold increase in deaths caused by cocaine since 2010. Indeed, there have been published reports that confirm that cocaine abuse is on the rise. In the U.S. there was a 26% increase in cocaine use between 2014 and 2015.
Cocaine is a highly addictive drug abuse that can have awful effects on those who get caught in its grip. These include addiction, financial ruin, and serious health problems. It can also result in something referred to as coke mouth. Coke mouth is the term used to describe the dental decay that results from cocaine abuse.
About Cocaine, How is Cocaine Used?
Cocaine is a powerful stimulant drug that is derived from the coca plant in South America. Cocaine is listed as a Schedule II controlled substance. This means it has a high risk for abuse and addiction.
Drug dealers often dilute the cocaine with fillers, like cornstarch, talcum powder, or baking soda. They do this in an effort to increase profits. In recent years, cocaine laced with the deadly opioid fentanyl has led to an increase in overdose deaths. Coke can be snorted, injected, smoked, or rubbed over the teeth, a cause of coke mouth.
Cocaine is sought after because of its intense high. The short-lived effects of cocaine also include a sense of euphoria. The person feels increased energy, sharper mental focus, and a sense of being invincible.
Symptoms of a cocaine problem include:
- Manic mood.
- Weight loss.
- Sores around the mouth.
- Going for long periods without sleep.
- Muscle tics.
- Risk-taking behaviors.
- Drug cravings.
- Obsessed about getting high, and obtaining the drug.
- Money problems.
- Withdrawal symptoms when the drug is absent
As with all substances of abuse, tolerance rises with increased use of cocaine. Over time, the person finds him or herself using more of the drug more often to attain that first high.
What is Coke Mouth?
Cocaine use results in something called xerostomia, or dry mouth. This happens when the person doesn’t produce enough saliva. Saliva protects teeth and gums. When it is reduced, the teeth are exposed to the drug’s extra acids. This can quickly lead to tooth decay and gum disease.
Other dental problems lead to coke mouth. Cocaine use causes people to clench their jaw also known as coke jaw and grind their teeth. As they clench their teeth they wear the enamel down and cause loose teeth. Also, coke mouth can include bleeding gums, perforation of the palate, mouth ulcers, and infection of the bone.
When someone becomes addicted to cocaine, their dental hygiene takes a back seat. All that neglect can result in very bad dental effects that can require them to have their teeth pulled.
Cocaine Detox and Withdrawal
When cocaine use turns into addiction, the person will need treatment. Cocaine is very hard to overcome without support. The detox process from cocaine can be very unpleasant, leading many to give up on the idea of detox and recovery.
The detox and withdrawal phase of treatment involves the process of ridding the drug from the body. An expert detox team will closely observe symptoms and provide treatments to help relieve any pain.
Withdrawal symptoms might include:
- Extreme fatigue
- Slowed thinking.
- Sleep disturbance.
- Vivid nightmares.
- Feeling restless.
- Increased appetite.
- Muscle aches.
- Suicidal thoughts.
Generally, cocaine detox takes about a week. The length and level of withdrawal symptoms is based on the length of time the person was using cocaine. It also depends on the usual amount of cocaine used daily.
Cocaine Addiction Recovery
Treating the cocaine addiction is the next step. This will involve a multi-pronged approach that centers on therapy. Therapy helps the person unwind the trigger response and reflex to use. This pattern is what keeps them stuck in addiction and must be unlearned.
These therapies might include:
- Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)
- Contingency management (CM)
- Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT)
In addition to the one-to-one and group therapy sessions, cocaine addiction treatment will also include other actions. These include classes, 12-step programs, relapse prevention, and holistic therapy practice. Once the person commits to treatment and works hard in therapy they will be able to move past the cocaine problem.
Cocaine Addiction Treatment at Capo By The Sea
Capo by the Sea is an upscale treatment center in SoCal. The coastal setting is perfect for tackling the cocaine problem, as it is calm and peaceful-perfect for healing. An expert staff provides the best treatment methods available. They will combine therapy with holistic actions, such as massage and yoga. For any questions about the program, please contact the team at (888) 529-2114.