Cocaine addiction is a psychological obsession characterized by seeking and using the drug habitually and uncontrollably. Next to methamphetamine addiction, cocaine manifests the most severe psychological addiction among stimulants that react with dopamine in the the brain. The addiction also causes noticeable shifts in behavior and psychological demeanor. Aggression, debilitating paranoia and pronounced mania are often symptoms of prolonged cocaine abuse. The moods of a cocaine user can be so transient that they are rendered unpredictable and unstable to say the least.
The “high” associated with cocaine use is one of markedly increased energy and profound sensations of pleasure and euphoria. Inversely, the following “crash,” or “comedown,” from the high involves feelings of deep depression, exhaustion and fatigue, anxiety and irritability, resulting in intense cravings for more cocaine. Furthermore, a phenomenon of cocaine is the rapidly developed tolerance to the substance in its users, who will therefore need to continue increasing the amount they take in order to attain the same effects. This psychological state of complete loss of control and helplessness to resist can be so severely unmanning and crippling that to the addict the only solution to such hopelessness seems to be more cocaine. The craving and obsession can be demoralizing to the point that an addict will go to any lengths to obtain more of the drug.
Unlike opiates, alcohol and benzodiazepines, cocaine addiction does not involve physiological dependence and it is purely an addiction of the mind. There are no existing medications agreed upon to be wholly effective in helping to ease a transition from cocaine abuse to abstinence, nor is tapering a viable method. Treating cocaine addiction is entirely a psychological endeavor in which the roots of a drug seeking mentality and drug seeking behavior will have to be revealed in the individual.
Because of the increase of impulsivity in an individual addicted to cocaine the best case scenario for treatment would be to remove the addict from their environment and sequester them in an inpatient drug treatment facility. Addiction of any sort can be isolating. Taking an addict out of their walled in isolation and placing them somewhere where they will be supported by professionals as well as others going through a similar experience is vastly important. Reassurance that no one must face the issue of addiction on their own can be very comforting to those who are suffering in the grips of an addiction.