How to Stop Addiction Caused by Cocaine
Cocaine is a highly addictive stimulant that produces euphoric effects by increasing the amount of the neurotransmitter dopamine in the brain. Cocaine addiction is linked to serious physical and psychological health risks. Although there is no cure, treatment of cocaine addiction is possible. Abstain from using cocaine. You may experience withdrawal when you stop using cocaine. Withdrawal symptoms typically begin with a "crash" that is characterized by an intense craving for more cocaine. According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), cocaine withdrawal symptoms are mostly psychological. Fatigue, irritability, anxiety, depression and sleep disturbances can occur when you stop using cocaine. According to WebMD.com, these symptoms are temporary, although the craving for cocaine may last for months and can return after years of abstaining from cocaine use. Seek inpatient treatment. A residential treatment program or therapeutic community can provide a safe, supervised and drug-free environment in which to cope with severe withdrawal symptoms. Not everyone who stops using cocaine will require inpatient care. Engage in outpatient therapy. Many types of outpatient therapy are designed to treat cocaine addiction. Individual and family counseling, support groups, anonymous groups, and cognitive-behavioral therapy are all forms of outpatient therapy that can help you adjust to life without cocaine and establish social bonds not based on cocaine. Contingency management is a program of voucher-based rewards given for prolonged abstinence from cocaine and continued participation in a treatment program. The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) claims that outpatient therapy that is tailored to your specific needs will be most effective. Consult a doctor about obtaining a prescription. According to the NIDA, there is no drug that specifically treats cocaine addiction; however, some drugs may help treat symptoms of cocaine withdrawal. Research funded by the NIDA suggests that the high blood pressure medication propranolol may be effective in reducing anxiety and cravings for cocaine. According to drug-rehab.com, disulfiram, a drug used for the treatment of alcoholism, may help treat cocaine withdrawal. According to AddictionRecoveryGuide.org, benzodiazepines, such as Valium, have been used to reduce the anxiety that can occur with cocaine withdrawal. Antidepressants, and the drug bromocriptine, may help treat mood disturbances you might experience. A study published in 2000 in the American Journal of Psychiatry indicates that by increasing dopamine levels, amantadine may help diminish cocaine withdrawal symptoms. Research funded by the NIDA and NIH suggests that the amino acid supplement N-Acetyl cysteine, which is available to buy without a prescription, may diminish cravings for cocaine.