Addictions Cocaine Addiction Help

Need help overcoming an addiction? Contact us to learn how psychiatrist Dr. Hege can help you quit and work to minimize discomfort through managed treatment.

Help for Cocaine Recovery in Metro Atlanta

How can you help with my cocaine recovery?

Dr. Darvin Hege provides local, out-patient, treatment in the metro Atlanta area. He uses the best medications available to help minimize cocaine craving and withdrawal. These are properly researched medicines. These medicines combined with cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) have the highest recovery rates available.

What medications will help my cocaine addiction withdrawal symptoms?

  1. Disulfuram – This medicine helps minimize cocaine cravings and significantly increases abstinence and recovery rates in studies over the first three months. Dr. Hege has been prescribing this medication to treat alcohol abuse for thirty years.
  2. N-acetyl-cysteine – This is a nutritional supplement that has been found to help initial withdrawal symptoms, such as depression, tiredness and sleepiness, for the first three weeks of abstinence from cocaine. Preliminary research shows it to be more effective than placebo.
  3. Modinifil, baclofen, naltrexone, and Topomax have been shown to be helpful for some patients in preliminary studies. Dr. Hege has ten years experience using naltrexone for other indications.

What is CBT?

CBT is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. This is a type of talk therapy that is focused on helping the cocaine abuser correct distorted thinking about cocaine behaviors that are high risk for causing relapse and recognizing mood states that make one vulnerable to relapse. CBT can be done in conjunction with the medications prescribed for you. It can be done in twenty minute sessions or you can be referred to a therapist in Dr. Hege’s network for longer one-hour therapy sessions for more intensive intervention.

What does an addictionist who is also a psychiatrist offer you?

Dr. Hege is an addictionist, certified by ASAM (American Society of Addiction Medicine), and a psychiatrist, board-certified by ABPN (American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology). In 24 years of experience as a full-time private practitioner, Dr. Hege has treated many patients with a primary or secondary substance abuse problem.

Initial assessment includes evaluating for any psychiatric condition which may be caused by the cocaine problem or that may have existed before the cocaine problem and contributed to the development of cocaine dependence. Commonly found disorders include depression, anxiety (panic disorder, social anxiety, PTSD, generalized anxiety disorder, and OCD), ADHD, and bipolar disorder. Relief of these conditions with medication or other therapies increases the chances of getting clean and staying clean. As a psychiatrist, Dr. Hege is skilled and experienced in managing the medications to relieve these conditions.

What common psychiatric conditions co-exist with cocaine dependence?

Depression is often a part of the “crash” and usually dissipates rapidly during the post-acute withdrawal phase, i.e., within one week of stopping cocaine. However, a significant group of people who get dependent on cocaine have a primary pre-existing depression. They may have found that cocaine offers them some temporary relief of depression. If this depression is not treated effectively with non-addictive antidepressants, you are more likely to relapse on cocaine.

Anxiety disorders are frequently caused by cocaine, classically panic disorder. Many patients report their first panic attack after their first use of cocaine. Frequently, even though they used no more cocaine, they still could not get their recurring panic attacks to stop. We have many effective medications to stop the cycle of panic attacks and the anticipatory anxiety of having another panic attack.

Social anxiety, GAD (generalized anxiety disorder), PTSD ( post-traumatic stress disorder), OCD (obsessive-compulsive disorder) may be temporarily relieved as a result of cocaine usage that inflates self confidence, optimism, and enhanced self-esteem. However, this is frequently followed by extended and irreversible worsening of the anxiety symptoms. This frequently leads to increasingly more frequent and higher doses of cocaine to ward off intolerable nervousness and fear.

People with bipolar disorder have much higher rates of cocaine abuse related to more thrill-seeking behavior during the highs and search for relief from depression during the lows. We have many good medicines to assist in mood-stabilizing the bipolar swings. Medicine may be critical for people with this condition to have a fighting chance to remain abstinent from the cocaine.

People with ADHD may try to self- medicate with cocaine to improve focus, hyperactivity, anxiety, and mental performance. Impulsivity and difficulty learning from experience are common symptoms of ADHD. This contributes to early loss of control of cocaine and development of dependence. There are numerous safe, non-addictive medications to relieve the ADD symptoms which increase the chances of kicking the cocaine habit.

For help with your cocaine recovery efforts in the metro Atlanta area
call Dr. Hege today for the expertise and relief you need!