How to Beat Cocaine Addiction
There were roughly 1.9 million people addicted to cocaine in 2008, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. This is a very high number of people who are dependent on this drug. It is considered by many as one of the hardest substances to beat. The question how to beat cocaine addiction is not easy to answer. Many factors come into play like, recognizing the addiction, making the decision to do something about it, setting goals, talking to friends and family, and seeking help.
Recognize the addiction
One of the hardest things to do is to recognize the addiction for what it is. This involves knowing the signs of cocaine or crack addiction. The common symptoms of cocaine addiction include:
- needing the drug to function normally,
- needing more and more of the drug to produce the same effect,
- job loss due to drug use,
- friends and family avoiding the addict,
- failing to care about personal appearance,
- loss of enjoyment in things that used to cause pleasure,
- doing things that are out of the ordinary to obtain the drug such as theft and prostitution, and
- legal issues because of cocaine.
Although there are many more symptoms of cocaine use, these are the most common. These are signs that there is an issue with addiction and it is time to seek help and treatment. Recognizing this is the first step in beating the addiction.
Decide to beat addiction
Next, a person has to decide that they want to stop using. If you truly want to beat a cocaine addiction, you need to resolve to do so. Every person is different but cocaine withdrawal is a long process. Most people experience cravings for months after quitting. These cravings are most intense about two months after using. This means that cravings can come unexpectedly for a very long time. This causes many people to relapse and start using again. Without a clear decision to stop, it is difficult to overcome these cravings.
One of the most effective ways to wade through the cravings for cocaine is to keep busy. Sitting idle and thinking about how much you desire the drug makes it very difficult to resist. Activities like exercise, hobbies, reading, working, video games, and writing are great ways to beat any addiction. By keeping busy, you keep your mind and body active. Writing is known to be both therapeutic and constructive. Looking over the journal later on helps to prevent relapse because you see your mistakes and desires in black and white.
Create goals and work towards obtaining them
Having goals and listing them helps you to center your thinking. If you are taking steps to fulfill your goals, you have less time to worry about using. Focusing on what you want your life to be is an excellent way to avoid using. A goal might be something simple like getting through the next hour, day, or week without using or it might be something more complex like going back to school or finding the right job. Goals need to be clearly defined, have a timeline, and be obtainable. No matter what the goal is, having a clear and decisive plan helps to prevent relapse.
Talk to friends and family
While using addicts tend to alienate friends and family. Talking to them and telling them the plan to stop using can help. They are a valuable support tool and many people find comfort in confiding in them. They can help you stay on track as long as they are not judgmental and do not use themselves. Unfortunately, there may be friends that still use and will discourage you from getting help. These friends will usually distance themselves from you when you attempt to quit.
According to the National Library of Medicine, cocaine is the third most prevalent drug. Addiction to it is also highly treatable. Seeking help is the best way to beat addiction. There are several ways to get help that is both effective and cost conscious.
- Your doctor – a good place to start is with your general practitioner. Not only do they have your health in mind, they have access to resources that you may not. They can provide access to information and other detox options.
- A rehab center – there are many rehab centers across the United States. Each of these facilities offers different programs to help beat addiction. Some of these programs include a safe place to detox, medical care when needed, counseling, exercise, dietary counseling, and a variety of holistic therapies.
When choosing a rehab facility make sure it meets the needs of the addict. Some facilities offer holistic approaches, some offer medical approaches, and some offer behavioral approaches. Choose the approach that works best for you.
- Community help – most communities have community based addiction help. This is usually in the form of a group, club, or program. Many of these community-based programs are either low cost or no cost. They are easily accessed through the state information websites and other community resource lists.
No matter what method you use figuring out how to beat cocaine addiction does not have to be difficult. By resolving to quit and seeking help for the addiction it is possible to leave it behind. Addiction to cocaine does not have to destroy your life.