Addiction is making headlines across the nation. Choose any major newspaper and you’ll see stories of heroin, fentanyl, and methamphetamine affecting lives and whole communities. While these sad stories grab headlines, it can be easy to think that’s where the drug problem and substance abuse ends.
But there are many forms of addiction that don’t make headlines.
Cocaine addiction is still a significant problem for many. While not the headliner it used to be in the ’80s, this drug is widely available and difficult to avoid for those who know where to find it. This highly powered stimulant is a Schedule II drug, meaning the U.S. government finds it to be high risk for abuse but does have minimal medical use. On the street, cocaine will often be found in a snortable or injectable powder (coke), or a smokeable form (crack). However its found, cocaine addiction can be a serious problem, but it’s possible to quit.
Defining Drug Abuse
When does the occasional drug dabbling switch from use to abuse? While it’s easy to see when someone is hitting rock bottom, drug abuse can begin with more subtle signs. Cocaine is extremely fast-acting, so the effects can disappear within hours, leading some people to think that they do not have a dependency or addiction. Chemically, however, increased use of this stimulant will act upon dopamine production in the brain. Dopamine is one of the body’s “happy chemicals” that affects mood among other things, and cocaine allows this neurotransmitter to build up unnaturally, disrupting the body’s normal regulation of risk and reward. Overtime (which is different for everyone) this disruption will create a dependency on the drug for that rewarding feeling in addition to creating habits and behaviors that are difficult to break on their own.
Most people don’t go straight to a professional for treatment. The average person will try to quit or reduce their coke use on their own believing that their problem was only minor, fearing embarrassment, or believing willpower alone is enough to kick the habit. And while a few people make it – most people fail without support.
Fortunately, just as addiction isn’t a one-size-fits-all problem, neither should you settle for a recovery option that isn’t right. Many people have successfully recovered from cocaine addiction with the right support. Professionals can help provide quality behavioral and medical support and peers can help ease the struggle. Primary types of addiction treatment include:
- Inpatient detox and rehab – full-spectrum care to help bring you back to help both physically and mentally in a controlled setting away from home and the associated triggers you may find there.
- Outpatient treatment – professional support including many aspects of inpatient care that also allows patients to continue required duties at home or work in a limited manner.
- Support groups – including 12-step programs and counselor-led group therapy, many people find recovery easier with community peer support. Groups are available across the nation and on a wide variety of schedules to help others maintain sobriety.
- Individual therapy – often included as part of both inpatient and outpatient treatment, individual therapy can help retrain toxic behaviors and diagnose underlying issues that may have led to cocaine abuse.
- Sober living – many people in recovery find their path easier when living in a supportive environment with others who are maintaining a sober lifestyle. Unlike inpatient treatment, individuals are free to come and go as long as they follow house rules.
All of these options are designed to help quit cocaine addiction, managing the steps of withdrawal. Most addicts will experience cravings, anxiety, and even paranoia during the process, and it can be dangerous to do so alone, increasing the risk of depression and suicide. Find the right support to help yourself or the addict in your life quite cocaine safely. Visit principlesrecoverycenter.com to learn more.