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New Study Shows That With Cocaine Addiction, Goal-Directed Behavior Is What Matters


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Drug addiction of any kind requires specialized treatment, and each person is different as well, making customized treatment even more important. A variety of resources are utilized in reputable treatment centers to help people restore their mind, body, and spirit from drug addiction. Long-term cocaine use has been shown to lead to increased irritability, restlessness, panic attacks, paranoia, and even psychosis at times. It can also lead to tears and ulcerations in the gastrointestinal tract, malnutrition and rapid weight loss, chest pain, increased risk of stroke, and more. If you’ve recently began treatment for cocaine addiction, a new study finds that it’s important that you focus in on goal-directed behavior.

Many treatment centers utilize contingency management, which is when an individual will receive vouchers for things like movie tickets or food if their urine sample comes back with no drug use or if a person has been attending all of their recovery sessions. While research has shown that this can be very motivating, those with cocaine addiction may also need strong motivation towards goal-directed behavior because their addiction may have impaired some of this executive functioning in the brain. A 2016 study conducted by researchers from the UK, Netherlands, and New York emphasized the importance of habit learning – cocaine addiction preps a person to constantly seek out sources that generate the release of dopamine, giving them that “high” feeling. Thus, it’s important for reputable treatment centers to help individuals develop new patterns of behavior in recovery.

Much of the new habits that need to be learned with cocaine addiction involve coping mechanisms and strategies, such as:

  • Seeking help when feeling distressed
  • Distracting oneself when cravings arise
  • Re-thinking urges by reminding oneself of the consequences of using
  • Placing oneself in situations and environments that are conducive to recovery, not using
  • Surrounding oneself with people who support recovery, not using

It may take some time, but the right treatment center can help you develop various tools towards managing cravings and distressing emotions associated with life’s challenges. If you haven’t already, speak with a professional from a reputable treatment center today to learn more about which program may work best for you.

Simple Recovery is a world-renowned, California state-licensed substance abuse recovery center. We offer dual diagnosis treatment, so if you are experiencing both substance abuse and symptoms of a mental disorder, call us today at 888-743-0490 so that we can work with you to restore your happiness, health, and well-being. You do not have to continue living this way; there are many people here ready to help you.