The number of under-18s being treated for cocaine addiction has risen by more than 65% since 2005, with the figure for 18-24-year-olds doubling over the same period.
Four in 10 addicts were clean after six months of cognitive behavioural therapy although nearly 25% dropped out of the treatment, the NHS figures revealed. The study by the National Treatment Agency in England revealed that 75% of users mix the cocaine with alcohol, causing more heart damage and potential for violent behaviour.
Paul Hayes, chief executive of the NTA, said: “More people are using powder cocaine, more people are seeking help for dependency, and more are being successfully treated.
“Powder cocaine is a powerful stimulant drug which induces psychological rather than physical dependence. Most users will be treated locally in their communities with talking therapies rather than medication, and our message to users is that if they need help, they can get it and it works.”
Last year 12,354 people were treated for cocaine addiction in England.