Cocaine, a stimulant, comes from coca leaves, which have been chewed and consumed for millennia; numerous elixirs and tonics contained cocaine in the early 20th century.1
A Schedule II drug, there actually are permissible medical uses for cocaine (e.g., local anesthesia in certain operations) yet unfortunately its abuse potential is high.1
Cocaine Use in America
It was estimated that nationally in 2018:2
- Over 1,900,000 individuals 12 years old and older used cocaine in the last month.
- Over 5,500,000 individuals 12 years old and older used cocaine in the last year.
- Over 800,000 individuals 12 years old and older first used cocaine in the last year.
Cocaine Use Statistics in Texas
- Based on 2016-2017 surveys, it was estimated that, in Texas, on average each year 1.47% of individuals ages 12 and up used cocaine in the last year (comparatively, the corresponding estimate for the U.S. overall was 2.03%).3
- Based on 2016-2017 surveys, it was estimated that, in Texas, on average each year 0.46% of individuals ages 12 through 17 used cocaine in the last year.3
- In 2018, 445 poison center calls involved cocaine, per information that was obtained from the Texas Poison Center Network, Department of State Health Services.4
- Provisional data for 2018 indicates there were 886 cocaine deaths in Texas that year.4
Texas Treatment Data
Sadly, it was estimated, based on 2016-2017 surveys, that on average each year over 460,000 individuals ages 12 and up in Texas needed illicit drug use treatment in the last year yet did not get it.3
There were 5,496 treatment admissions of Texas residents that occurred in 2018 where cocaine/crack was the primary substance, and among these:4
- Over 42% of those admissions were non-Hispanic African American/Black persons, almost 30% of them Hispanic/Latino persons, and over 26% of them non-Hispanic White persons.
- Over 46% of those admissions were persons who used via smoking, over 48% were persons who used via inhaling, over 2% were persons who used via injecting, and less than 3% were persons who used via another way or whose route of using was not known.
- 43.7% of those admissions were females.
Treatment Options for Cocaine Addiction
Drug addiction is complicated, involving brain alterations plus various environmental (including familial and social) factors, so this broad context (and any psychiatric illnesses also present) needs to be addressed by cocaine addiction treatment.5 It is important that persons with addiction stay in treatment for enough time.6
The National Institute on Drug Abuse indicates there are not currently any medicines with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s approval for treating addiction to cocaine.5
Contingency management (CM) and cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) are two types of behavioral therapy that might be utilized.5
CM might be especially useful for assisting individuals to initially stop using cocaine and to remain in treatment.5
CM utilizes a reward system: for instance, for negative drug tests, a program may give out points that individuals could redeem for things like a meal at a restaurant, tickets to a movie, or a gym membership.5
CBT could assist an individual to develop abilities to recognize as well as avoid circumstances where that individual has the highest probability of using cocaine and to cope better with various issues connected to drug use.5
If an individual participates in Cocaine Anonymous or another 12-step community-based recovery group, this might assist that individual to stay drug free.5 Though this is not professional treatment, it might complement such treatment and might prolong professional treatment’s impact.6
The website for Cocaine Anonymous (C.A.) provides suggested meeting formats.7,8,9 Though there is not a list of meetings on the website, it does give links and contact information that might help an individual find a nearby C.A. meeting.7
Its steps are a modified version of Alcoholics Anonymous’s Twelve Steps.10
There is no mandatory cost to be a member of C.A. (though they do request voluntary contributions from meeting attendees), and donations given by outside persons or groups are not accepted by C.A.10
- National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2016). Cocaine: What is cocaine?.
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2019). Results from the 2018 National Survey on Drug Use and Health: Detailed tables.
- (2019). 2016-2017 NSDUH state-specific tables.
- Maxwell, J. C. (2019). State of Texas: Drug use patterns and trends, 2019.
- National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2016). Cocaine: How is cocaine addiction treated?.
- National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2018). Principles of drug addiction treatment: A research-based guide (third edition).
- Cocaine Anonymous® World Services, Inc. Meetings.
- Cocaine Anonymous World Services, Inc. CA_meeting_formats_2019.
- Cocaine Anonymous World Services, Inc. HI_meeting_format.
- Cocaine Anonymous® World Services, Inc. What is C.A.?.