First Responders and Addiction to Cocaine

First Responders and Addiction to Cocaine

Traumatic experiences are among the common triggers of substance abuse and addiction. If we add a constant state of stress or fatigue then we see how a demanding job can become a factor in the abuse of harmful substances. First responders, for example, are usually exposed to difficult situations and potentially traumatic experiences along with long shifts and often physically demanding workloads.

There are many reasons why a first responder might see harmful substances such as cocaine as a way to cope with overwhelming feelings and emotions. We can mention, for example:

  • Being exposed to the suffering of others
  • Seeing people in traumatic or life-ending situations
  • Exposure to disturbing injuries
  • Working long hours even during the night
  • Working through dangerous situations

It is not difficult to see how problems such as cocaine abuse can start if we take into account the amount of psychological damage that these situations can cause. By knowing more about how this drug works we can have a better understanding of the importance of avoiding an addiction or recovering from it.

Cocaine and Trauma – Knowing the Dangers

Cocaine is a nervous system stimulant extracted from the coca plant. Between the effects that may seem attractive to recreational users we have:

  • Euphoria
  • Feelings of well-being
  • Increased energy
  • Increased alertness

But if we compare this to the many adverse side effects and symptoms of chronic use, we see how cocaine addiction can only cause negative consequences. Also, it is illegal, highly addictive, and potentially fatal in the case of an overdose and other complications.

Cocaine addiction and PTSD (Post-traumatic stress disorder) sufferers are related in the sense that cocaine might be seen as a way to relieve stress or gain more energy to continue with day-to-day activities. First responders might be suffering from PTSD while still trying to continue working and dealing with day-to-day stressors and challenges.

Avoiding and Recovering from Addiction

It is recommended that workers who are overly exposed to stressful situations – such as first responders –  constantly care for their psychological health. Hospitals, city government, or employee assistance programs may provide counseling and therapy sessions in an effort to help their workers deal with traumatic experiences. It is important to seek the help of a professional mental health care provider when symptoms of trauma appear.

In some cases, however, addiction might develop if insufficient prevention efforts are taken. Your best option is to learn more about cocaine use, cocaine abuse, and cocaine addiction for yourself or a loved one. Cocaine rehab centers and other programs related to addiction treatment are available. By calling our toll free helpline, you can receive information at no cost about services such as medically-supervised detox programs, Dual Diagnosis rehab centers, transport to and from rehab, intervention services, insurance for rehab, and much more. Being better informed can give you the confidence needed to overcome cocaine addiction or to help a loved one to recover.

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