According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health published by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) in 2015, around 1.5 million Americans use cocaine on a monthly basis. This represents a significant portion of American society although the fact is that the figures almost certainly don’t reveal the full truth. There are around 15,000 cocaine rehabilitation centers around the country offering specialist rehab specifically to meet the rising problem of cocaine addiction.
Cocaine causes immense changes to the brain’s function whether taken in its powdered form or crystallized, which is known as “crack.” Cocaine can either be inhaled, smoked, ingested or injected and each method of use has its dangers. The main issue with cocaine is that its effects are short-term which often leads to people repeating use in one session so that they maintain the high.
Cocaine is a stimulant that works to energize users so that they feel a huge sense of euphoria and power. This can be a huge confidence boost in social situations and when mixed with alcohol, cocaine’s effects can be extended. However, it is exactly this type of behavior that results in people developing tolerance, dependence and ultimately addiction.
Here we show in step-by-step format how individuals with cocaine addiction successfully overcome their illness.
Step 1: The warning signs become clearer to see.
When someone is in the early stages of substance abuse, they are likely to go to great lengths to conceal their use from those close to them. This can be for a number of reasons although it generally signals they may be in denial they have a problem, attempting to shrug-off loved ones’ concerns. However, over time it becomes harder to mask the illness which is marked by an all-consuming compulsion to use and they may get sloppy when hiding their paraphernalia. The kind of items likely to be found around people using cocaine includes spoons, mirrors, razor blades, powdered residue, straws, pipes, and burnt tinfoil.
Step 2: They become ill.
Just as cocaine delivers an immense hit to the brain, it also affects the body in adverse and unexpected ways. The kind of complications users risk varies according to the severity of their addiction and how they use the substance, although the most common include:
- Frequent nosebleeds
- A sore throat and hoarseness
- Persistently runny nose and constant sniffing
- Extreme weight loss
Step 3: They are confronted.
At some point in an individual’s cocaine addiction journey, they are likely to be challenged by others when they see the signs of substance abuse. When family members are motivated to help their loved one by intervening, it can provide extra incentive for them to enter a cocaine rehab center. The process used to get loved ones into a cocaine rehab center is called an intervention, which usually requires a specially trained third-party to supervise.
Step 4: They enter a cocaine detox program.
The effects of cocaine use and abuse on the brain are deep and intense, which can make it more complicated for individuals to detox from. The process is made much harder however if individuals decide to detox on their own as it is not possible to determine the severity of withdrawal from a drug as potent as cocaine.
At Elevate, we believe in a natural detox with holistic therapies and treatments used to relieve and eliminate uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms. For cocaine addiction, we generally recommend a 30-day detox program which gives individuals plenty of time to eliminate the influence of the drug without using any chemical substances. The kinds of therapies used in detox include massage therapy, aromatherapy, meditation, deep breathing and physical exercise.
Step 5: Entering cocaine rehab.
Once a patient has completed the first step of recovery and has detoxed from cocaine, they are ready to take the next step of entering a cocaine rehab center. Rehab is designed to help people remain drug-free and therapy is offered alongside a range of medical, psychotherapeutic and holistic treatments. The ultimate objective is to prepare people for their lives in sobriety, preparing a recovery strategy to support them throughout their lives.
Evidence-based treatments such as cognitive behavioral therapy or CBT are used to delve into the patient’s psyche and reveal their innermost fears. These are generally the negative thoughts and emotions that drive addictive behavior and by identifying them, it is possible to adapt the way a person thinks and ultimately their behavior too. Behavioral therapies have been proven to be extremely effective in promoting long-term recovery from cocaine abuse.
Step 6: Developing cocaine relapse prevention skills.
Addiction is a relapsing illness which means a person can go back to abusing substances even years after leaving a cocaine rehab center. For this reason, the best cocaine rehabilitation centers place emphasis on teaching patients essential coping skills to help them protect their sobriety in recovery. Holistic relapse-prevention arms patients with more positive skills for combating stressful situations which would otherwise lead to the person using. While patients are in cocaine rehab, they will be assessed so that the triggers for use are identified. By doing this, clinicians are able to devise a personalized recovery strategy for each individual patient.
Step 7: Building a sober community.
One of the significant benefits of cocaine rehab is that individuals are introduced to others dealing with addiction. The alliances formed in rehab can become a strong support network for people in recovery and friendships made can last for years. Group therapy sessions are usually scheduled throughout residential rehab so that patients can share a platform for discussion about intensely personal issues among people who will not judge them. The sober community built in rehab is extremely important in boosting recovery outcomes.
Step 8: Transitioning back into the community.
When a person has completed intensive treatment for cocaine abuse, they may become anxious about returning home. Patients in rehab are immersed in a sober community and some people emerge from a program feeling disconnected from people outside the center. They may feel that they will be bombarded with questions after returning from an absence and for this reason, good cocaine rehabilitation centers like Elevate offer aftercare drug treatment.
People have to make significant lifestyle changes when leaving rehab and people at home can be resistant to this happening. There is always more than one person affected by addiction and so it’s natural to expect a reaction when returning from rehab, whatever that may be. Aftercare drug treatment supports patients through this transition, often offering family counseling to help heal damaged relationships and rebuild trust.
Step 9: Taking on sobriety one day at a time.
Research shows that when people feel supported in recovery, they have a better chance of achieving long-term sobriety. Support is offered from counselors, therapists and numerous recovery support groups such as AA, SMART Recovery, SOS and Women for Sobriety. Individuals are encouraged to surround themselves with people who are in-tune with their sober lifestyle, which can sometimes mean ending old friendships and forming new ones.
Ultimately, the journey to recovery from cocaine abuse is an individual experience and as no-one can see into the future; they are unlikely to know how much – or how little – recovery support is needed. For this reason, it is always recommended that people embark on rehab and recovery with the guidance of addiction specialists on a residential or outpatient addiction treatment program.
Have you or a loved one experienced cocaine addiction?
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