Compared to other forms of addiction, cocaine addiction has proven to be very difficult to plan an intervention for. Cocaine addictions, unfortunately, can have a strong grip on the individual abusing this substance. Concerningly, an overdose on cocaine is attributed to anywhere between 4,000 to 8,000 deaths in the U.S each year. This makes treatment all the more critical to prevent unintended consequences such as death by overdose.
The cocaine intervention process would be much easier if the user took accountability for their actions, the issues associated with the situation, and entered into rehab without any emotional pain inflicted on the family. However, the likelihood of this happening is extremely rare. In most cases, an individual addicted to cocaine will require intervention and addiction treatment.
How Is A Cocaine Intervention Different From A Regular One?
One of the main ways a cocaine intervention differs from a regular intervention is the urgency with which the intervention must take place. As a very serious addiction, cocaine use cannot be condoned, or the health of the addict may be at risk. Further, intervention for cocaine succeeds in helping the individual take accountability and pushes them to commit to pursuing treatment.
When a family member or friend holds an intervention for a loved one who is addicted to cocaine, it is a much more effective option than allowing the addicted individual to deal with their addiction on their own. It’s not wise for the addict’s support system to hope and wait that the issue will just go away. It is also not wise to force the addict to get help without confronting them compassionately.
When creating an intervention for cocaine, there are a few main points to remember :
- Intervention can help repair the family structure
- It creates a readiness for the person to receive assistance
- It’s crucial to understand that cocaine interventions do not fix the person struggling
- It encourages the addict to enter long-term treatment and start the recovery process
Due to the denial of the individual, they often refuse to seek treatment. Moreover, many addicted individuals do not even know that they have a substance abuse problem. Therefore, the intervention is an essential and effective tool. It can help a loved one who abuses crack or cocaine to put a halt to their behavior and receive formal—sometimes life-saving—treatment.
The Main Goal of Drug Interventions
The main goal of an alcohol and drug intervention (for cocaine or otherwise) is to focus on demonstrating how the user’s actions have affected their family members and friends. During the intervention, each member of the intervention group will alternate between sharing particular ways in which the individual substance abuse has harmed them. Through these methods, the addict might begin to truly recognize the weight of the situation.
Additionally, the ultimate success of the addiction intervention depends on the boundaries set forth by the family. Eventually, the primary objective is to encourage the user to seek treatment. However, it’s crucial to be aware that interventions don’t determine the outcome of the treatment for addiction to cocaine. Intervention, instead, is the first step to getting alcoholics and individuals with an addiction or substance use disorder into treatment.
If the person suffering accepts to go to rehab, as a result of their intervention, they must attend immediately. Therefore, it’s important to have a plan set in place for when the addict agrees to attend a treatment program. If the individual does not agree to attend rehab, boundaries must occur.
Cocaine Intervention versus Crack Intervention
The approach for planning an intervention for individuals struggling with cocaine and crack addiction is fundamentally the same. However, the probability of the addict accepting treatment is where the true issue lies. Cocaine addicts are infamous for convincing themselves that they can quit using on their own.
Making the intervention process different for each substance, the following factors often set apart cocaine and crack addictions:
- Crack addiction is considered to be much more difficult to plan an intervention for because the user hardly realizes they have an issue in the first place nor finds there’s a reason to stop what they are doing.
- The majority of cocaine interventions are centered around binge crack users, which means the user will vanish to get high for 3-7 days, then return home to sleep for 2-4 days.
- The unfortunate part is family members fall for their loved one’s promise to quit, and just as this happens, the user vanishes on another crack binge.
- Crack users often empty their bank accounts during their pursuit to fulfill their needs.
- One of the most strategic preparations of interventions is the timing because the user is the most vulnerable right after a long binge.
While there are key differences between crack and cocaine intervention requirements, there are similarities between these addictions to keep in mind as well. For example, unlike heroin or alcohol, which causes physical or mental dependence, cocaine and crack users don’t experience withdrawal symptoms that cause uncomfortable physical pain. Often, due to the cocaine withdrawal symptoms being minor, crack abusers announce they have used it for the final time, and it won’t happen ever again.
Cocaine Intervention Preparation: Steps You Can Take
If you are going to plan an intervention for cocaine use, there are a few things to be prepared for. First, it is imperative to be prepared for the abuser’s denial and refusal to accept treatment. This is common because it can be exasperating for the addict to acknowledge their behaviors and the effect these actions have on others.
Next, it’s essential to present a structured and thought-out intervention plan. The primary goal of an intervention is to change circumstances before they become worse. The following steps will ensure that your intervention for a loved one addicted to cocaine will be successful:
Hire an Intervention Specialist
Hiring an intervention specialist can help make the later steps in the intervention process easier. These professionals can guide you through the process. Further, with information about the addicted individual, a specialist can make recommendations that best suit their needs.
There are numerous benefits to hiring an intervention specialist, including:
- They are prepared for best and worst-case scenarios
- They assist in improving the likelihood of a triumphant confrontation
- These professionals are accountable for developing an actionable strategy
- Intervention specialists are familiar with the local recovery resources in the area
- Specialists act as third parties who can reduce emotional and reactive situations
- These trained professionals are better equipped to handle strenuous confrontations
- Intervention specialists have experience with helping alcoholics, addicts, and their families
Make a Plan
Preparation and planning are two of the most important components of how to stop cocaine or crack addiction. Before the intervention takes place, the team of family members and friends should form a planning group. During this time, it is advised to consult with a qualified addiction specialist, counselor, interventionist, or psychologist to help stay organized.
There will be a few components discussed and prepared during this step, such as:
- How they will demonstrate worries or fears experienced by the entire group
- What each member will say regarding what they know about their loved one’s alcohol or drug abuse
- Creating letters or lists highlighting how the individual’s addiction has affected their life personally
- Creating and preparing statements beforehand, so the group can ensure they will be able to say everything that is needed
The intervention will likely be finalized with outlined consequences that detail what will occur if the loved one refuses professional help. The consequences should be determined before the intervention begins and should be created to promote recovery versus solely delivering punishment. For example, family and friends can agree to not provide the addicted individual with monetary help to prevent them from buying drugs.
Confront the Loved One
Finally, it is time to confront your loved one. Overall, it is most effective to address the person who is struggling when they are comparatively sober, unprepared, and in a logical state of mind. This would allow for honesty and vulnerability. Once the loved one arrives at the designated area and each member of the team is present, the group will begin expressing their thoughts and feelings, set healthy boundaries, and take turns reading their letters.
How Should They Follow Up After Treatment If The Person Refuses Treatment?
Unfortunately, not all interventions are successful due to the individual having the freedom to decline the treatment approach and deny they have a problem. It is common for a loved one with an addiction to become agitated, upset, or defensive when confronted about their substance abuse. There are several ways to follow up after treatment and several ways to be prepared if they refuse treatment even after intervention for cocaine use.
First, it is best to stay prepared for any situation that might occur while also remaining optimistic about the potential outcome. One of the important steps will be to ask other members of the support system to avoid enabling the cycle of reckless behavior and take vital steps to encourage constructive change. Additionally, it’s important to be prepared as the following situations may occur when you confront your loved one:
They May Claim Help Isn’t Needed
Before heading into an intervention process, it will be essential that each individual on the support team educates themselves. The individual abusing cocaine or crack will be able to know if their loved ones don’t know what they are talking about. Unfortunately, this could make it easier for the addict to manipulate the situation or not take the situation seriously. As the family member or friend gathers resources, they will be more knowledgeable to understand what their loved one is experiencing.
They May Display Anger
It is going to be trying times to maintain a level of patience when dealing with an individual struggling who requires intervention for cocaine use. However, family members or friends must do so. During the intervention, it’s important to stay calm. This is because the addict will respond in anger if the person addressing them seems impatient or loses their temper.
There will be a balance that needs to be maintained because being patient does not mean enabling the addict’s behavior. This is where boundaries come in. While patience is essential, so is drawing the line that determines what will be and what won’t be tolerated.
They May Be Resentful and Accuse You of Betrayal
When the family member or friend is not also an addict, it makes it more difficult to understand where their loved one is coming from. However, it is important to be empathetic and compassionate. This will ensure that your intervention for a cocaine-addicted individual has a better chance of success.
It will be tempting as a non-user to contemplate how the person struggling can’t just quit but substances hold a huge grip on addicts’ lives. It’s important to remain humble and remind each member of the support team that addiction is not that simple.
They May Play the Victim
The individuals struggling with addiction might begin to make excuses and minimize their behaviors. Victimization can disrupt the overall goal of intervention and deeply affect the family members. So it’s necessary to follow the protocol on how to address the user wisely.
Recovering from Cocaine Addiction at Northern Illinois Recovery Center
If a loved one is struggling with cocaine addiction or alcohol abuse, they must get the help that they need. Addiction is a serious illness that affects every part of a person’s life. Their body, mental health, and future can all be at stake. An intervention can be the push they need to move past this serious condition and begin to manage it.
The most effective way to plan intervention is with assistance from professionals. Here at Northern Illinois Recovery Center, we can help you plan an intervention for cocaine use and review treatment options when your loved one is ready. Contact us today to get started on jumpstarting the loved one’s sobriety.