Certain substances of abuse are quite dangerous on their own — such as cocaine and alcohol. When users consume large amounts of alcohol or cocaine over an extended period of time, they put their bodies at risk of various health issues, up to and including severe long-term damage and death. When a user chooses to mix the two substances — using cocaine while drinking alcohol — the risks associated with each substance grow exponentially.
Why Do Users Mix Cocaine With Alcohol?
Those who abuse either cocaine or alcohol may have developed a tolerance to the substance. While they initially felt a great “high” from a bump of cocaine or a few drinks, their bodies have become accustomed to the substances and the same amounts no longer produce the same effects. As a result, most users begin to increase their levels of consumption, taking in more alcohol and drugs in an effort to achieve a high. As their tolerance levels grow, users may be looking for the next best high, leading them to begin mixing substances of abuse.
Since cocaine is a stimulant, it is popular with those who drink, as it allows them to stay up longer and party later. They are then able to drink more alcohol over a longer period of time. While users enjoy this effect of mixing alcohol and cocaine, it can have dangerous consequences. Dehydration is common as users consume alcohol in higher quantities.
What is Cocaethylene?
“…using cocaine while drinking alcohol — the risks associated with each substance grow exponentially.”-Projectknow.com When cocaine and alcohol mix, they are far more dangerous than either is on their own. This is because the mixture creates a toxic new substance, called cocaethylene. Cocaethylene is incredibly toxic to the liver. It has been shown to contribute to heart attacks in younger individuals. As a result, many users have experienced spontaneous heart attacks after mixing alcohol and cocaine.
Getting Treatment for You or your Loved One
Don’t let dangerous risks of mixing cocaine and alcohol present themselves in your life. Instead, you can get effective evidence-based treatment that can help you leave alcohol and cocaine behind for good. In cases of multiple addictions or abuse of multiple substances, inpatient addiction treatment is generally recommended. This allows the patient to fully focus on the recovery process and isolates them from access to the substances of abuse.
Outpatient care is used in instances of mild or short-term addictions or to augment recovery after inpatient care. In addition, those seeking recovery from cocaine or alcohol addiction often participate in 12-step groups in the community where they can gain support from other recovering addicts.