People living with cocaine addiction can face severe physical, social, and psychological consequences of their drug abuse. This powerful drug can reduce a person’s ability to stop using on their own, and most people will need to seek treatment in order to achieve a lasting recovery. Fortunately, quality, evidence-based addiction treatment methods can help people break free from cocaine addiction and achieve recovery.
Understanding Cocaine Addiction
Cocaine is a powerful stimulant drug. When people smoke, inject, or snort cocaine, their central nervous system becomes extremely excitable, creating psychological and physical symptoms, such as:
- A restless sense of energy
- A false sense of confidence
- Enhanced sociability
- Appetite suppression
- Elevated heart rate
Cocaine produces these effects by influencing the behavior of two neurotransmitters within the brain: dopamine and serotonin. These neurotransmitters function as chemical messengers within the nervous system, with dopamine carrying the message of “reward,” while serotonin helps regulate your mood.
Neurocircuitry of Cocaine
In both cases, cocaine blocks the brain’s ability to recycle these neurotransmitters when they are released. In a normal brain, dopamine and serotonin are released during activities that feel good, such as spending time with friends or eating great food. After they have carried their messages, the brain recycles (or “reuptakes”) these chemicals for later use.
Cocaine blocks the reuptake of both dopamine and serotonin so that after these chemicals are released, they stay within the brain and repeat their message over and over. This floods the brain with messages of reward and elevated mood until the effect of cocaine wears off.
Over time, this can cause lasting consequences. The powerful effect on dopamine can quickly develop into cocaine addiction, leading people to abuse cocaine over and over again. Substance abuse quickly becomes the priority in an individual’s life, and important social, occupational, and academic responsibilities fall by the wayside.
Cocaine Addiction Signs
The powerful effects of the drug on the mind and body produce several signs that can be observed when a person develops a cocaine addiction. Signs of cocaine abuse include:
- Weight loss
- Changing social circles
- Sleeping at odd hours
- Giving up on activities that used to be important
- Financial problems
The way that a person administers cocaine may also show distinct signs. People who snort cocaine may constantly sniffle, while people who inject cocaine may have red marks up and down their arms.
Cocaine Addiction Symptoms
The effects of cocaine addiction can spread far and wide, affecting the individual, their families, and even their communities. Common signs of cocaine addiction include:
- Repeated, unsuccessful attempts to stop or cut down on cocaine use
- Loss of interest in other hobbies or activities
- Worsening mental health symptoms
- Problems at work, school, or home due to cocaine use
- Using more cocaine than intended or for longer than intended
- Powerful drug cravings
- Withdrawal symptoms if cocaine use suddenly stops
Cocaine addiction is progressive, which means it gets worse over time. Fortunately, finding treatment at a cocaine addiction treatment center can help people overcome these symptoms and achieve lasting recovery.
How Cocaine Addiction Rehab Can Help
Finding help at a substance use treatment center provides several evidence-based tools to help people overcome drug use. Cocaine addiction treatment is broken down into several distinct stages that each help with a different part of the recovery process.
The first step in treating cocaine abuse is staying at a medical detox center. Medical detox is designed to help treat physical cocaine withdrawal symptoms, as well as prepare people for the next stages of drug addiction treatment. When a person suddenly stops using cocaine, they can experience symptoms such as:
- Sleep difficulties
At a medical detox center, these symptoms can be addressed with targeted medications and treatments. In addition, our experienced medical team can work to diagnose any co-occurring mental health conditions that may stand in the way of recovery.
While detox helps many people break through the initial stages of cocaine withdrawal symptoms, it must be followed by intensive addiction treatment in order to produce sobriety that lasts.
Outpatient Cocaine Addiction Rehab
After people have overcome the effects of cocaine withdrawal in detox, outpatient cocaine addiction rehab can help them learn the skills and tools required to stay sober for the months and years to come. Outpatient treatment uses several evidence-based tools to help people accomplish this task, including:
Meeting with a therapist for individual sessions helps people to learn their unique triggers, challenges, risk factors, and barriers to recovery. Therapy sessions can help people learn to deal with these challenges using targeted psychotherapy techniques that have been developed over many decades.
Group therapy is a powerful tool in drug addiction treatment. It brings together a group of people who are in a similar situation and can share their experiences, challenges, and successes with one another. Sometimes, the best person to help with cocaine addiction is a peer who can truly empathize with their position.
Many people dealing with cocaine addiction have co-occurring mental illnesses. In dual-diagnosis treatment, they can treat their mental health and substance use disorders simultaneously. Strategies may include taking targeted medication, engaging in specific behavioral health therapies, and attending mental health-focused support groups.
During outpatient treatment, patients continue to live in their own homes or in supportive recovery housing. This helps them to learn to use the skills they learn in treatment in the real world.
Aftercare programs are an effective way of helping people stay accountable in their recovery and manage risk factors after they complete treatment. Aftercare programs can include services such as ongoing mental health care, alumni groups, and 12-step meetings.
Start Treatment for Cocaine Addiction at Jewel City Treatment Center
If you or a loved one is struggling with cocaine abuse, the team at Jewel City Treatment Center can help. Our team has decades of experience helping people break free from cocaine addiction and co-occurring mental illness.
We know how difficult it can seem to achieve recovery, but it is possible with the right assistance. When you’re ready to begin, reach out to our team via our confidential online contact form.