Does Cocaine Stop Heroin Detox Symptoms?

Is there any truth to that cocaine can help stop heroin withdrawal symptoms? Is this just even more dangerous than without it?

When a person is addicted to heroin, their entire life revolves around using and having heroin at all times. The euphoria is intense, but it is not the only reason heroin addicts must use it regularly. Heroin is an opioid drug which means it will cause physical dependency after several months of continued use. Addiction to heroin means that the person’s brain stops producing its own endorphins and dopamine, which are needed to manage stimulus that causes pain. A heroin addict’s brain realizes that the user supplies it with an external opioid for pain relief. A lack of endorphins and dopamine is the main reason why heroin addicts get violently sick when they run out of heroin.

Does Cocaine Stop Heroin Detox Symptoms?

Information About Heroin Withdrawals

Heroin withdrawals are incredibly harsh, and most addicts cannot tolerate them and will do anything to get more heroin or another opioid to relieve the symptoms. This is why heroin addicts commit minor crimes is to fund their heroin addiction, so they do not get dope sick. Unfortunately, it is not unusual for a heroin addict to remain hooked for many years. Not only because the heroin withdrawals are so horrible but because their behavior has transformed into full-time addicts and criminals. Fortunately, there are now effective opioid replacement drugs that cancel out heroin withdrawals and are called medication-assisted treatment (MAT). 

What Are Heroin Withdrawal Symptoms?

Heroin withdrawal symptoms, heroin detox symptoms, or kicking start within a few hours of the last use. The longer a person has been addicted to heroin, the sooner they begin. On average, heroin withdrawal start every 6 hours. Heroin withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea
  • Chills and cold sweats
  • Muscle and body aches
  • Restlessness leg syndrome and agitation
  • Severe insomnia
  • Heart palpitations and high blood pressure
  • Inability to eat or drink fluids
  • Emotional outbursts  
  • Desperation for heroin

Does Cocaine Stop Heroin Detox Symptoms?

Any long-term heroin addict who also uses cocaine will confirm that cocaine decreases and puts off full-blown heroin withdrawal symptoms. The research behind this phenomenon is also valid. According to a Scientific study published with the National Institutes of Health about heroin and cocaine addiction, the researchers established that cocaine does inhibit opioid withdrawal symptoms. 

Several recent studies have provided evidence that cocaine can decrease the intensity of opioid withdrawal. In opioid-dependent individuals not in treatment, cocaine has been used to postpone withdrawal symptoms and modulate the severity of opioid withdrawal. In humans and rats physically dependent on heroin, morphine or methadone, withdrawal signs are attenuated by acute cocaine administration. (NIH)

Using cocaine to detox from heroin can be fatal and is never recommended. Today there are fast-acting and effective opioid replacement drugs to cure withdrawal symptoms safely.

Why Does Cocaine Relieve Heroin Withdrawal Symptoms?

The reason that cocaine will diminish heroin withdrawal symptoms is because of the brain’s chemical reactions. Even though each drug is a different category, heroin is a central nervous system depressant, and cocaine is a central nervous system stimulant, both trigger dopamine release. The reward pathway in the brain is what controls dopamine. The brain’s data on cocaine and heroin have found that since both drugs act on the reward pathway, they similarly affect the person. The pharmaceutical details on why cocaine reduces heroin detox symptoms are complex but have been studied and documented. 

Heroin users often report cocaine-use of cocaine in a sequential manner either to enhance euphoria or to reduce the withdrawal symptoms when they decide to detoxify from opioid drugs. (NIH)

What Programs Are Effective For Heroin and Cocaine Addiction?

Recovery from heroin addiction and cocaine addiction will require medically supervised detox, opioid replacement medications, and in-depth behavioral therapy personalized to the individual. The most effective program for heroin or cocaine addiction is evidence-based. It relies on cognitive behavioral therapy, one-on-one counseling, medication-assisted treatment during and after rehab, and ongoing aftercare support and therapy. 

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