Cocaine usage can lead to addiction, an addiction so strong that willpower alone will not be enough to resist it. It is for this reason that medications are used to treat this form of substance abuse. Some may find it a bit ironic that drugs are used to fight an addiction to drugs, but sometimes fire must be fought with fire, and the following medications make it a lot easier to quit cocaine for good.
Cocaine is illegal in many countries because there is no safe way to use it. Addiction can occur rapidly, and as addicts continue using it they will eventually build a tolerance, which means that they must consume more in order to achieve the same high. This tolerance worsens the addiction and makes it much harder to break free. This is the reason why cocaine addiction can be so debilitating to those that have it. The good news is that a greater awareness of this drug and the consequences of using it have led to the development of a variety of treatment procedures, from rehab to counseling. A number of researchers are also experimenting with a variety of medications. Here are some of the most popular:
Disulfiram is a potent substance which has proven effective against both alcohol and cocaine addiction. Though it has received approval from the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) it should only be taken under the supervision of medical professional, as it can cause harmful reactions if misused.
A vaccine is being developed which is designed to reduce the desire of addicts to consume cocaine. While this vaccine is still in its early stages, it has shown considerable promise, and over fifty percent of patients who have tried it have reported that they were able to discontinue using the drug. The majority of these patients stayed drug free for a minimum of 12 months.
When used daily, buprenorphine has been found to reduce an addict’s craving for cocaine. While studies are still being conducted to test the true effectiveness of this medication, most researchers consider it to be legitimate form of pharmacotherapy for those that are recovering from heavy cocaine usage.
Why Drugs Are Needed For Cocaine Addiction
Cocaine addiction is incredibly difficult for most people to overcome. The reason for this is not only because the cravings are intense, but also because if an addict does attempt to quit cold turkey the withdrawal symptoms can be so severe and debilitating that they often fall into a relapse, and resume using the substance.
Rehab treatment facilities have experimented with various medications in order to find a way to help addicts recover faster and with greater ease. It is for this reason that these medications have been developed. A number of university studies have shown that these medications are effective when targeting dopamine transporters. Mice which were genetically altered were exposed to the medication, and the results show that when cocaine is unable to block dopamine transporters the mice were unable to become high.