Finding a Treatment Center for Cocaine Addiction

shutterstock_198140027Cocaine is a dangerous and toxic drug. The repercussions of using it both long and short term can be deadly. This highly addictive drug is difficult to stop using on one’s own. Help is needed which is where treatment centers staffed with professionals come in.



Cocaine is a stimulant which increases levels of alertness and energy in the body. Feelings of euphoria start and users often feel an increased heart rate and blood pressure to keep up the higher levels of energy. Body temperatures rise but headaches and nausea are also common side effects of using cocaine. The kidneys and lungs may sustain long term damage and lead to decreased sexual function in men and women. Inhibition is reduced which increases the risk of sexually transmitted diseases through promiscuous activity.


Finding Treatment

In spite of its highly addictive nature, cocaine addiction can be treated with professional help. Users typically need to be removed from places and away from people with whom they used. Through the use of medication to reduce depression or withdrawal, a user may require detoxification. This will help rid the body of cocaine’s toxic effects and aid in recovery. Not everyone needs to experience this but it may be helpful for some under the guidance of professional therapists and counselors.


Cocaine addiction is most effective within a residential treatment program. Physical withdrawal may take a week or less but psychological withdrawal can last longer which leads people to relapse. The following services are generally offered to anyone seeking treatment for a cocaine addiction:


  • Medication with monitoring, as needed
  • Therapy including individual, family and group
  • Twelve step meetings such as Cocaine Anonymous (CA) with resources for connecting once rehab is over
  • Sober activities such as walking, biking, swimming, reading, etc
  • Education about addiction, side effects and long time repercussions
  • Relapse prevention planning


There are many medications which can be used to help treat cocaine addiction. Among them are:


Baclofen: muscle relaxant to stave off cravings

Disulfiram: an anti-alcoholic agent which makes using cocaine unpleasant

Gabapentin: an anticonvulsant which makes cravings easier to deal with and lessens severity of relapses

Modafinil: effective in reducing cravings for cocaine as well as reducing the high from cocaine

NAC (or N-Acetylcysteine: amino acid with proven effectiveness in reducing cravings for cocaine

Nocaine: drug provides weaker version of cocaine to users but blocks stimulant effects

Vigabatrin: antiepileptic drug helps to lessen cocaine cravings


Seeking Treatment

The best recovery program will offer several treatment methods with the focus on the person and the addiction including one-on-one care to discuss individual progress, addiction and group sessions to provide peer support. Staff at a treatment center should be readily available to answer questions about possible treatment options beforehand to determine best fit. An effective program will give patients the tools to live sober and healthy outside of the treatment center with the right supports in place. A treatment center may also offer to arrange aftercare services for those successfully completing treatment.