Does Cocaine Cause Hair Loss?

The Lesser-Known Effects of Cocaine Use

Cocaine is a potent stimulant that can cause changes in brain structure when used repeatedly. Depression, eating disorders, sleeplessness, and heart damage are well-known effects of cocaine use. Cocaine use leads to various adverse effects, including hair loss.

Hair loss is a common problem many people want to avoid as they age, and hair is a culturally significant component of both men’s and women’s identities. While it’s common knowledge that alcohol and drug usage are bad for your health, many remain unaware that they can also damage your hair and lead to balding.

Cocaine addiction can have far-reaching consequences. Keep reading to understand how cocaine may cause hair loss.

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Does Cocaine Cause Hair Loss in Men?

Cocaine can cause hair loss because of a wide range of factors. This drug promotes rapid weight loss, which means your body won’t get enough nutrients to keep your hair healthy. Cocaine use may also trigger telogen effluvium or stress-induced hair loss.

Those who use cocaine may take part in destructive habits that harm your hair and body.

The Relationship between Cocaine and Hair Loss

Cocaine and Hair Loss

The use of cocaine may cause hair loss in three distinct ways:

  • Nutritional deficiency
  • Stress
  • Unhealthy lifestyle choices

Below is a breakdown of each factor.

Nutritional Deficiencies and Poor Diet

Maintaining a healthy body and hair requires specific nutrients. Cocaine and other illegal drugs may decrease hunger and interfere with your body’s ability to absorb nutrients. This may lead to hair loss as your body prioritizes core body functions over maintaining your follicles.

Stress on the Body

Telogen effluvium (TE), or stress-induced hair loss, is a form of hair loss that often occurs after experiencing stress, illness, and physical or emotional trauma. Recreational drug use may trigger TE, characterized by accelerated hair shedding and thinning.

Your hair undergoes growth in three phases: anagen, catagen, and telogen. Telogen effluvium interupts the hair growth cycle. Because of this, you’ll start losing hair.

Although TE can be transient, prolonged exposure to stress and recreational drug usage might make it permanent. The focus of severe cocaine withdrawal symptoms may also cause temporary hair loss.


Lifestyle habits may cause loss of hair. Healthy hair results from different factors, including getting enough rest, eating right, and having a proper hair care routine. Cocaine use adversely affects sleep, nutrient absorption, and hair quality.

Using cocaine decreases sleep quality by lengthening the times you’re awake and disrupting your rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. REM affects your memory and your capacity to learn.

If you deprive your body of restorative rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, you reduce the quality of sleep. Your body repairs itself as you sleep by secreting hormones necessary for the process. However, cocaine use harms this process and can lead to hair loss.

Cocaine as a Factor in Hair Loss

Lack of sleep prevents necessary restorative body processes. Stress, exacerbated by a lack of sleep, may cause telogen effluvium. Damage from telogen effluvium is irreversible if the body lacks sufficient nutrients and quality sleep. This vicious cycle has lasting effects on your hair and your well-being.

The Relationship between Crack Cocaine Use and Hair Loss

The use of crack cocaine differs from that of powdered cocaine. Crack cocaine is smoked and not snorted. It is highly addictive, and one can become addicted to crack cocaine after use.

Side effects of crack cocaine include hair loss, kidney damage, heart disease, and lung issues. Like powdered cocaine, crack cocaine causes hair loss due to stress, reduced appetite, disrupted sleep patterns, and malnutrition.

Although neither form of cocaine is inherently more likely to cause hair loss, crack cocaine can cause more rapid damage to the body, raising the chance of hair loss.

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Treatment for Cocaine-Induced Hair Loss

Stopping cocaine is the first and most crucial step to regrowing your hair. No matter what you do to try to regrow your hair, it’s unlikely that you’ll be successful unless you address your addiction to the drug.

Hair loss from cocaine use is usually temporary, so starting treatment may be all you’ll need to save your hair. It would help if you enrolled in a reputable recovery program to beat your addiction and improve your health. Call Find Addiction Rehabs for help locating a cocaine addiction rehab center.

Rehab facilities offer various treatment options for cocaine addiction, including inpatient care, outpatient care, and mutual support groups. Inpatient treatment works best for opioid addiction treatment.

Quitting cocaine use is safer at a drug rehabilitation center due to the severity of the withdrawal symptoms. By checking into rehab, you’ll have a greater chance of establishing healthy routines like going to bed at a reasonable hour and eating regularly.

Many respectable treatment facilities also have access to or may help their patients obtain drugs to restore hair loss caused by substance abuse. When combined with abstinence from opiates, alcohol, or cocaine, these advantages can help restore temporarily lost hair due to cocaine usage.

Can Your Hair Grow Back After Cocaine Addiction Treatment?

Cocaine Addiction Treatment Group therapy session.

Temporary stimuli like nutritional deficiency and stress often cause cocaine hair loss. Hair loss is something the body tends to reverse once it has begun the healing process automatically. However, chronic cocaine abuse can cause permanent hair loss that may not be reversible without additional treatments of some kind.

Consider the options below if you want to speed up the regrowth of your hair or if you’re having trouble stopping the hair loss caused by cocaine:

  • Use hair-growth supplements
  • Use a laser cap device
  • Consider holistic hair growth solutions.

These choices are entirely safe and natural, so they won’t delay your recovery. Although they require some concentration, they are possible to use during therapy and after drug treatment.

Here are some valuable tips for optimal hair growth:


  • Only use hair growth vitamins consisting of natural components and organic elements like zinc and biotin to support hair development.
  • Use laser caps with low-level laser therapy (LLLT). This FDA-approved method uses medical-grade lasers to flash a specific wavelength of red laser light onto your scalp and rejuvenate your natural growth patterns. Recovering drug users may wear their laser caps while meditating to help relieve stress and regrow hair simultaneously.
  • Be cautious of using prescription alternatives for hair growth, such as minoxidil or finasteride since they can have adverse medical side effects. That’s why a more holistic approach to hair growth works best.


Hair Growth Options for Those in Recovery

If you are struggling with cocaine hair loss, you can try various hair regrowth options, such as:


Scalp massages increase scalp stimulation and may boost hair thickness. Stretching the dermal papilla cells at the hair follicle’s base helps stimulate hair growth and thickness. Hair development, growth, and the shedding and renewal cycle depend on these cells.

Massage also helps improve blood flow to the scalp and overall health. Sparing time to massage to scalp daily also helps relieve tension and stress. When massaging the scalp, use your fingertips and not the nails.

Aloe Vera

Aloe vera’s soothing and conditioning effects help treat hair loss. It helps eliminate the extra oil that may have clogged your hair follicles and dandruff.

You can use pure aloe vera gel on the scalp and hair weekly. Aloe vera-based hair care products, such as shampoo and conditioner, are also available.

Coconut Oil

The lauric acid included in coconut oil helps prevent protein loss by penetrating deep into the hair shaft. You can apply coconut oil before or after washing your hair, depending on your hair type. Do a leave-in treatment for greasy hair the night before you wash it, or at least for a few hours before washing.

Spread coconut oil through your hair and massage your scalp. You can use it as a leave-in treatment if your hair is dry. Coconut oil helps moisturize the hair shaft, prevents breakage, and enriches the scalp microbiome for healthier follicles.

Fish Oils

Man taking medical treatment for hair loss

Since omega fatty acids are rich in minerals and proteins, eating them can help your hair regrow. Taking omega supplements and antioxidants can increase hair density and thickness. It can also help prevent further hair loss.

The correct functioning of cells and a strengthened immune system are just two of the many benefits of omega fatty acids. Before adding any new supplements to your diet, check with your doctor and follow the dosage instructions provided by the manufacturer.


People suffering from hair loss can benefit from taking Viviscal, a natural hair growth product containing vitamin C and AminoMar C. These components can help in cell renewal and revitalization.

Take the pills twice daily for at least six months to see the best results. Viviscal also produces a line of hair care products.

Frequently Asked Questions on Cocaine and Hair Loss

How long does cocaine last in your system?

Blood and saliva tests may detect cocaine or its metabolites for up to 2 days after last use, urine tests for up to 3 days, and hair tests for months to years. A positive urine test result can detect cocaine for up to 2 weeks in a heavy user.

Does cocaine cause hair loss?

Although studies have shown loose correlation with cocaine and hair loss, it is most often considered stress (or the body’s stress response) to cocaine that causes hair loss.

How long does cocaine withdrawal last?

How long cocaine withdrawal lasts varies by user and other circumstances. Cocaine withdrawal symptoms begin hours to days after last use. Some people undergo weeks or months of withdrawal.

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Get the Help You Deserve for Cocaine Now!

Cocaine abuse can negatively affect a person’s health in several ways. Treatment can help you reclaim your life after a full recovery from addiction. Many people who have suffered from the symptoms of cocaine addiction have now made positive changes in their lives and become healthy.

Call us today to find the treatment you or a loved one needs to overcome cocaine use disorder. If you have questions about rehabilitation, contact our confidential and caring team at Find Addiction Rehabs today!

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