Cocaine Addiction: What are the Percentages of Success for Recovery?

Recovery from cocaine addiction is a difficult process. The likelihood of relapse is higher than with many other drugs of abuse. Since treatments for addiction began to develop in the last century, many methods of treating and managing cocaine addiction have arose to help addicts with the challenge of recovery and continued wellness, including residential rehabilitation programs, intensive counseling, group therapy and 12 Step programs, just to name a few. Many people who need treatment wonder, how successful are these methods?

Initial Success Rates of Recover Programs

As of 2007, cocaine addiction was responsible for about 13% of admissions to drug treatment programs. In the time since, this percentage has only decreased slightly. Medical professional rank cocaine as the second most addictive and second most harmful drug of abuse. Statistics involving the successful treatment of cocaine abuse are extremely varied. According to national statistics on recovery, the rate of successful treatment and recovery range from 3% to 76% of people attempting to quit cocaine whether they are doing so alone or through a program. That’s an enormous range.

Overall, successful detoxification is much more often seen in a residential program setting, although some non-residential and/or 12 Step Programs have demonstrated results as well. Counseling has also been shown to be beneficial to drug users, regardless of in- or outpatient status. In general, however, the more intensive the treatment received, the better the long-term results. That is, 90-day programs provide more benefits, including lower rates of relapse, than those lasting 30 days or fewer.

Likelihood of Experiencing Relapse

About 50% to 90% of users experience relapse when they attempt to stop using cocaine without any assistance. That number declines for people who are receiving any type of treatment or therapy, although in terms of hard numbers, choosing a best treatment type is almost impossible. The general trends in recent research indicate that residential programs are likely to be the best option for the most people. For many cocaine users, their course of recovery may not be so straightforward as getting treatment and avoiding relapse. They may relapse, return to treatment, and possibly even relapse again before finally managing to beat the habit.

Unfortunately, long-term follow-up studies are difficult to conduct. This is in part because of medical privacy laws and the policies of individual treatment centers in terms of supplying aggregate data. No one wants to violate the privacy of their clients. Another factor at play here is the relatively high mortality rate among cocaine users, whether from overdose, side effects and co-morbid conditions, or from natural causes.

Individual Differences

A one-size-fits-all treatment for cocaine addiction does not exist. Countless factors influence whether or not a particular course of treatment will benefit an individual cocaine user. Among these factors are age, gender, socioeconomic factors and more, not to mention how long or how heavily they have abused cocaine. Long-term and/or heavy users often require additional treatment for conditions caused by their drug use, including anxiety and depression, along with conventional therapies. Without treatment for the psychological issues, lasting recovery may not be possible, because many cocaine users attempt to self-medicate by using more cocaine. This is why choosing holistic treatment options may be preferable in some cases.

If you or someone you are love are currently weighing treatment options, you should consider that any treatment is more likely to succeed than trying to stop using cocaine alone. Getting help is the first and most important step on the road to wellness for anyone struggling with cocaine use or addiction.

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