Cocaine addiction is one of the most common addictions due to the highly addictive nature of the substance. Cocaine increases the availability of the neurotransmitter dopamine in the brain which creates a pleasurable “high” and can create energy and increased focus which makes it appealing to a wide range of people. Addiction to cocaine is incredibly dangerous because users need to increase their dosage to achieve the same effect and it can stop people from feeling good when they are not using. So, if you or somebody that you know is addicted to cocaine then read on for advice on how to overcome this very serious problem.
Cocaine comes in two forms, and there are various ways that a user can ingest the drug. Cocaine powered comes from coca leaves and occurs naturally as a hydrochloride salt powder – this is usually snorted and absorbed through membranes in the nose. Crack cocaine, meanwhile, is altered to remove the salt which turns it into a crystallized form which is normally smoked. Both forms can also be liquidated and injected into the bloodstream which can create a more intense feeling which makes it more addictive.
Effects Of Abuse
Signs and symptoms of cocaine abuse to look out for either in yourself or others include increased agitation, mood swings, hyperactivity, involuntary movements, paranoia, malnourishment and lack of appetite, auditory hallucinations, nosebleeds and various negative mental health issues. Cocaine abuse can also lead to kidney damage and heart muscle damage which can lead to a decline in health and even death.
It can be hard to convince somebody that they have an addiction to cocaine as, unlike other drugs, they can appear to be fine after a “binge” and once they have slept the effects off. Therefore, many addicts believe that they have their usage under control and can fool those closest to them. It is possible to tell whether you or somebody is addicted though as they will continue to seek out the drug as they will no longer get any pleasure from everyday life.
Even if you or somebody that you know would classify their usage of the drug as recreational, then it is still important to be aware that there are still various neurological changes that can have a huge impact on your life. This, and the highly addictive nature of the drug, means that even recreational use can be dangerous and it is recommended that you stop usage completely.
If you believe that somebody that you know has an addiction to cocaine either in powder form or crack cocaine, then an intervention could be the best approach. In order for this to be successful, it is important that you find an experienced professional who will be able to guide you through the process. It is important to remember that you should always show that this is coming from a loving place and that you will continue to provide your love and support, but, equally, you must also remain firm and insist that they find treatment.
Regarding treatment, this will involve going to a long-term inpatient treatment center and you can use Addiction Treatment Services to find a suitable facility. The treatment process will depend on the facility and the individual, but it is likely to include a detox, behavioral therapies that will address the reasons and issues attached to the user’s addiction and pharmacological treatments which involves using medication to manage dependence on cocaine by physiological means. In terms of identifying a suitable facility, you will need to think about key aspects such as whether or not insurance will cover treatment, how long the program lasts, what methods of funding can be used to cover treatments and what aftercare programs are available.
Following on from this, aftercare is a vital part of recovery as people will often relapse without any aftercare when they finish treatment. Aftercare may involve regular sessions with a counselor, attending group events and checking in with the facility on a regular basis in order to stay motivated to stay clean.
Once you or the person who has completed treatment moves back home, then there will be new challenges to overcome. Going back to old ways can quickly lead to relapsing, so it is important to remove temptation. This might involve avoiding going out to bars or social situations where cocaine was previously used, ending relationships that involved drug use and avoiding triggers (such as alcohol).
Building A New Life
When you are sober and remove temptation, it is possible to start fresh and begin to build a new life. For some people, the best way to do this is to move home whether this is in the same city or somewhere completely different. It can also be helpful to try new hobbies, make new friends and replace drug use with something healthy like sport or regular exercise (which also releases dopamine).
Although clean and sober, it is still important that there is a support network in place as there are likely to be difficult days and it is a constant, ongoing process. This support network can listen to concerns, provide motivation, distract and generally provide support in any way that they can. If you do not have a support network in place, then you can find this by attending group therapy sessions which can be a great way to meet people who have been through the same battle with addiction.
Cocaine addiction is highly dangerous and it is one of the most abused drugs in the world, yet often people struggle to realize that they have an addiction. If you or somebody that you know is a user of cocaine in any form, then it is important that they stop as soon as possible which may involve having an intervention and seeking treatment in a rehabilitation facility. This can be a highly effective way to treat the addiction and provide methods for coping with temptation and help you to stay clean once your treatment has finished.