Living with a cocaine addiction can be challenging. An addiction to a substance like cocaine can have numerous negative effects on a person’s life. Sadly, these effects can often be felt by those one loves most, including their children. To help the children of a parent with a cocaine addiction, one must do what they can to help the parent first. While this process may be difficult, it is possible through understanding cocaine addiction, know what signs to look for, and understanding how to approach the situation. 

Understanding Cocaine Addiction

In order to help a parent with a cocaine addiction, one must first understand cocaine and its effects on an individual. 

What is Cocaine?

Cocaine is a highly addictive and extremely powerful stimulant drug. This drug is illegally trafficked and sold in the form of a white powder. When ingested, cocaine primarily affects an individual’s central nervous system; this, in turn, allows it to affect both a person’s body and mind. The high a person receives from cocaine is short-lived, but it is potent. 

Signs of a Cocaine Addicted Parent

Knowing if a parent has a cocaine addiction can be difficult. However, there are several signs one can look for that may make it easier. 

When a person consumes cocaine, they will experience multiple effects, including:

  • Extreme happiness
  • Increased energy
  • Heightened sensitivity and alertness
  • Irritability
  • Paranoia

Cocaine provides a user with a powerful but short-lived high. To identify whether or not a parent is using cocaine look for those signs appearing randomly and disappearing after anywhere from 15 to 30 minutes (unless the user consumes more).  

However, because an individual may not always be high, especially when using a short-lived substance like cocaine, it can also be useful to try to observe signs of cocaine withdrawal. Signs of cocaine withdrawal include:

  • Depression
  • Lack of energy or fatigue
  • Increased appetite
  • Slowed thinking and reactions
  • Unpleasant dreams
  • Insomnia

How to Approach a Parent with a Cocaine Addiction 

Sadly, the lifestyle of a parent with a cocaine addiction not only affects them but their child or children as well. In order to create a safer, healthier, and improved environment for both the parent and those living with them, it is important for them to seek and commit to professional addiction treatment at a rehabilitation facility. Sadly though, it is difficult for many individuals with an addiction to admit they need help.  

To successfully approach a parent with a cocaine addiction, one must keep in mind that they can not force anyone into treatment or recovery. They can only encourage it. The parent with the addiction must commit to recovery themselves, or else it is unlikely to be successful. 

If one is genuinely concerned for the safety and wellbeing of a parent with a cocaine addiction and their family, they should approach. However, they should do so with these tips in mind: 

  • Never approach the parent alone
  • Do not try to convince the parent they have a problem (express concern that they might have a problem)
  • Do not approach them if they are intoxicated
  • Emphasize that you are approaching them out of concern and care
  • List behaviors and incidents and why they concern you
  • Ensure that the conversation is a 2-way conversation (do not lecture)

Approaching a parent about a cocaine addiction is not easy, but it may be exactly what they need to seek out potentially life-saving treatment.  

What to Do if a Parent with a Cocaine Addiction Refuses Help

If a parent with a cocaine addiction refuses help or treatment, there is unfortunately very little a person can do. If the parent does not appear to be endangering their own life or the life of a child or children, it is best to reapproach them at a later time. However, if the parent appears to be putting themselves and their child or children in danger, it is better to contact the local police to conduct a welfare check on the child or children. These authorities will then assess the next steps based on what they observe. 

Don’t Be Afraid to Contact Professional Help

If you or a loved one is living with a cocaine addiction, help is available in your area! At Knoxville Recovery Center, our team of addiction experts provides numerous treatments and therapies to help our patients achieve lasting recovery. Contact us today for more information! 

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