Drug Addiction in the United States

Drug addiction still remains one of the prevalent issues that the government of the US has been trying to address for many years now. The country has been struggling with the effects of the economic crisis and is slowly getting back on its feet and unfortunately those who were driven to abuse drugs as a result of the crisis are still in need of receiving treatment and are fighting to get a second chance in life.

Who are affected?

According to a recent study that was conducted by the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, there are about 23.9 million Americans who have used illicit drugs within a period of 30 days. About 18.9 million admitted to using marijuana and the remaining portion used cocaine (1.6 million) and heroin (0.3 million).

It is also raising concern that majority of these drug users are teenagers and about 2.8 million of them were under the age of 18. Among these teenagers who were addicted to illegal drugs, about 65.6% started on marijuana, 17% with pain relievers, and 6.3% on different kinds of inhalants.

Drug abuse was found to be more prevalent in Americans who are in their late teens and those in their early twenties. It was also documented that there is little change in the trends of drug addiction when it comes to the age bracket, but there was a noticeable increase of drug addicts in their 50s from this recent study.

The report also states that although the efforts of the concerned agencies to control the rate of occurrence of drug addiction have doubled, the numbers of people who are addicted to drugs are steadily increasing each year.

What is their drug of choice?

It was noted that the number of people who prefer to use marijuana has increased, while the number of Americans who prefer cocaine have considerably gone down dropping from 2.1 million to 1.7 million in a period of 5 years.

The use of illicit drugs still remained at the top percentile (9.2%), marijuana was the second favorite (7.3%) and psychotherapeutics came third with 2.6 percent of the total. The remainder was using either cocaine or hallucinogens. The numbers show that Americans are starting to realize the dangers of using cocaine and heroin and have changed their preference to the “safer” drug.

Not Enough Help Out

The increasing numbers of those suffering from drug addiction raises the question of what measures the government is taking to curb the numbers. To date there are more than 23.1 million Americans who are in need of treatment from drug addiction, but in reality only 1% of these are receiving proper treatment and are being given the chance to recover.

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