Drug abuse and addiction development does not mean you have a flawed character. It is not a sign of weakness. Those who suffer from cocaine addiction can often feel frustrated, confused, and may even be in denial. It is important to remember that recovery is never out of reach. Understanding addiction and the warning signs of abuse can help you or a loved one. One of the most powerful things you can do is reach out for help for your disease.
Cocaine Addiction and the Brain
Addiction is a powerful and chronic brain disease. This disease affects millions of lives across the nation. Addiction is not able to be recovered from unless a person seeks treatment. The reason for addiction being so powerful is that it inhibits how your brain sends messages to your body, as well as how it interprets positive things. Once cocaine were to enter the body, a person would experience a short but intense high. This “high” is unnatural, but causes the brain’s reward system to skyrocket. There is nothing that the brain can react to in your day to day life that will mimic that same high.
However, your brain will still continue to seek out more cocaine. Over time, these reward pathways can become permanently damaged or even disappear completely. As a person continues to compulsively seek out cocaine, their tolerance will start to build. This means that the body requires more cocaine in order to achieve the same effects as before. This can have dangerous and even deadly consequences. Regardless of the negative consequences that ensue, the person’s brain will not allow them to stop thinking about cocaine. This may lead them to engage in criminal activity or negative behaviors.
It is important to remember that even though someone is suffering from an addiction, they are not a bad person. Addiction and substance abuse can happen to anyone. While someone may have permanent symptoms as a result of cocaine abuse, treatment options can help to manage those symptoms and allow them to achieve a level of normalcy. It is never too late to begin recovery.
What is Denial?
Denial is often one of the hardest bumps in the road to overcome when someone is abusing any drug, including cocaine. Denial is a failure to recognize a truth or emotion. This defense mechanism is often used by people when the truth is too hard to admit, as it may be too painful. There are signs if you think you are a loved one is experiencing denial. There are also ways you can help them work through it.
One of the main signs that someone is in denial is that they will make a lot of excuses for their drug use. Downplaying their drug use also falls into this category. A person may say that they only use cocaine as a way to relieve stress or as an energy booster. They may try really hard to convince you that they do not have a problem and that they only use cocaine occasionally. Another sign is that they may blame others for their actions. They may say that arguments with family members prompt cocaine use. Someone who is in denial will disregard the negative effects that their addiction is causing themselves and others to experience.
Helping someone out of denial can be challenging. If you feel stressed, anxious, or overwhelmed, it is best to seek professional medical help and get the support you need. Family members of a loved one suffering may choose to host an intervention where they discuss the addiction. It is important during this time to be specific about certain events and instances, but only say the facts. Keep the tone light and positive, never judgmental. Sometimes, a person suffering will have to come to the realization on their own.
Signs of Cocaine Abuse
Cocaine is highly addictive and effects can turn tragic rapidly. A cocaine high can take effect quickly and normally only lasts between a few minutes to half an hour. So, recognizing signs can often be challenging. However, it is beneficial to watch for warning signs to help prevent a potentially disastrous outcome.
One of the first things you may notice is white powder around the nose or mouth. This is actually cocaine residue. They may also have burn marks on their hands or around their mouth. If you are up close to them, you would see that their eyes appear to be dilated and they are sensitive to light. Their nose may begin to run or you notice that they have been having frequent nosebleeds.
There may also be social signs that you could watch for. A person may become more moody, having mood swings more often as well as emotional distress. The person suffering from cocaine abuse may have trouble coming into work on time or their job performance has started to decline. You may have tried to reach them several times, but they have not been answering the phone or returning your calls. They may have begun to isolate themselves, as well as display other abnormal behaviors.
Treatment Options For Cocaine Abuse
Before a person enters a treatment center, they will most likely need to undergo a medical detox. The detox helps to clear the body of the cocaine, so a person can enter the treatment program. Performing a detox at home is incredibly dangerous and can lead to relapse, overdose, and death. Besides the very severe consequences, at home detoxing can lead you to experience adverse withdrawal symptoms. Having medical supervision, will limit the effects that you experience during this time.
Inpatient rehab is one option that someone has when enrolling in a treatment program. Inpatient means that you will stay at the treatment center during the recovery process and is sometimes referred to as residential rehab. Outpatient treatment options are also available. This option is usually considered for those who have work, school, or familial obligations that would interfere with treatment. There are various other cocaine abuse treatment options that you and a healthcare professional can discuss. They will be able to help you decide on what will work best for you and your life.
Why You Should Choose Treatment
Addiction should never go untreated or attempt to be treated at home. Addiction is a disease that requires treatment just like any other disease. Without treatment, dangerous consequences could occur. If you or someone you know is struggling, it is important to reach out for help immediately.
The Arizona Addiction Recovery Center offers a variety of different treatment options, all with a holistic approach in mind. Their professional healthcare staff pride themselves on providing their patients with individualized care and support that does not just focus on the addiction, but on all facets of their lives. Call today to learn more about how they can help you choose the best treatment option and get you started on the road to recovery.
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Talk to Someone Who’s Been There. Talk to Someone Who Can Help. Arizona Addiction Recovery Center holds the highest accreditation (Joint Commission) and is Arizona’s premier rehab facility since 2007. Call 888.512.1705.