Cocaine: Getting Help

A person who is addicted to cocaine can get better. It means learning how to build a life with no drugs. The first step is getting help. The next is stopping the cycle of drug abuse. Then a plan to fight relapses is needed. Long-term support is needed for a cocaine user to stay drug-free.

Woman holdin gher head in her hands, looking down

The steps to treating addiction

  • Get help from a professional drug dependency counselor. This type of counselor helps a person see their drug addiction more clearly. They can also help family members deal with the user’s drug addiction.

  • Have a professional evaluation with a health care provider or psychologist who specializes in addiction. This helps assess the drug user’s needs and plan a course of action.

  • Start professional treatment. This type of treatment may be inpatient or outpatient. It may take place in a hospital or treatment center. It involves group or individual therapy. In some cases, medical treatment is needed.

  • Find self-help groups. These give support to help people stay free of drugs. They help a person make lifestyle changes that keep them away from cocaine. An example of this type of group is Cocaine Anonymous. See the blue box for contact details.

The road to recovery

Drug-free living is the goal of the recovery process. Cocaine addiction is a long-lasting illness that can come back again and again. The user may relapse. There can be a constant urge to go back to using. The user may think, “This time I’ll keep it under control.” A former user needs continued support to remain drug-free.

Helpful websites

For more information, go to:

  • National Institute on Drug Abuse
    www.drugabuse.gov/patients-families 

  • National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, Inc. (NCADD) 
    www.ncadd.org

  • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
    findtreatment.samhsa.gov 

  • Cocaine Anonymous
    www.ca.org 

  • Smart Recovery
    www.smartrecovery.org 



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