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Drug Addiction in America

Table of Content

You’d have to be willfully and intentionally ignoring the issue to miss it. Most, if not all, of us have some touch-points with addiction and the ravaging effects it has on the body and mind. Aside from the devastation it causes the individual user, it affects the lives of their loved ones, perhaps even you reading this right now, in a massive way.

As the perception of addiction slowly shifts from seeing drug abuse as exclusively criminal behavior to realizing that addiction is truly an illness, the stigma of getting treatment begins to soften.

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Addicted Americans

An Introduction To Drug Addiction in the U.S.

Drug addiction in America is rampant. It’s an epidemic. 

We’ll get into the facts and figures on a few of the well-known drugs that are abused in a moment but it’s worth noting the financial toll substance abuse has on the country.

The federal drug control budget for the fiscal year 2019 was $29.9 billion. For 2020 it’s $34.6 billion and it ticks up even higher in 2021. Those numbers point to the fact that the problem is seen as getting worse in the eyes of the government.
 
Furthermore, and brace yourself for this number, the National Institute on Drug Abuse estimates that the annual cost associated with the abuse of tobacco, alcohol and illicit drugs is $740 billion. That’s factoring in costs related to crime, lost work productivity and health care.
 
The damage done on the personal and human level is immense but taking into account the countrywide view and financial implications show that in some way, drug abuse affects literally the entire nation.
 
The damage done on the personal and human level is immense but taking into account the countrywide view and financial implications show that in some way, drug abuse affects literally the entire nation.

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How Many Americans Are Addicted to Drugs?

To put it bluntly; it’s a lot. The scourge of drug abuse is widespread. A study by the National Institutes of Health estimates that about 10 percent of Americans have had a drug use disorder at some point in their life. That translates to more than 23 million people. Worse yet, the same study said only about 25% of those with substance abuse problems actually get treatment. In other words, 75% of our fellow citizens that struggle with this, never seek help.

That number might seem vague, the 23 million, the timeline perhaps a little unclear and lumping in drug abuse in the distant past to today to make it seem worse. Taking a specific year, 2017, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration found that approximately 19.7 million had a substance abuse disorder related to alcohol or illicit drug use within that year. Truly astounding.

To break it down by the most prominent and widely used drugs is instructive in painting a more detailed picture of our collective reality with respect to abuse.

How All American Can Help

Recovery from substance abuse is a process and one that lasts a lifetime. Laying the right groundwork is key in making sure your treatment lasts, so once you’ve committed to striving towards a life of sobriety, our Los Angeles drug detox center is the first step in that journey.

Our robust residential inpatient programs allow you to transition from drug and alcohol abuse to clean living in a controlled and comfortable environment. While we offer several treatments, like; Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Medication-Assisted Therapy, Dialectic Behavioral Therapy, individual & group sessions and family programs, it doesn’t end at inpatient treatment.

Transitioning you into your new sober life takes more than that which is why we are dedicated to outpatient treatment and helping with aftercare planning.

With over 30 years of experience in treating substance abuse we understand that each client is unique and as such we tailor a recovery program to suit your individual needs, ticking all the boxes that ultimately set you or your loved one up for the future.

Achieve freedom from addiction with All American Detox, get in touch with us today to learn more and see if addiction treatment in Los Angeles is the right next step for you.

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Dedicated staff with expert knowledge & experience.

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Clients attend our program at a time to maximize individual care.

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Days of treatment are suggested for best results.

How All American Can Help

Recovery from substance abuse is a process and one that lasts a lifetime. Laying the right groundwork is key in making sure your treatment lasts, so once you’ve committed to striving towards a life of sobriety, our Los Angeles drug detox center is the first step in that journey.

Our robust residential inpatient programs allow you to transition from drug and alcohol abuse to clean living in a controlled and comfortable environment. While we offer several treatments, like; Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Medication-Assisted Therapy, Dialectic Behavioral Therapy, individual & group sessions and family programs, it doesn’t end at inpatient treatment.

Transitioning you into your new sober life takes more than that which is why we are dedicated to outpatient treatment and helping with aftercare planning.

With over 30 years of experience in treating substance abuse we understand that each client is unique and as such we tailor a recovery program to suit your individual needs, ticking all the boxes that ultimately set you or your loved one up for the future.

Achieve freedom from addiction with All American Detox, get in touch with us today to learn more and see if addiction treatment in Los Angeles is the right next step for you.

0 +

Dedicated staff with expert knowledge & experience.

0

Clients attend our program at a time to maximize individual care.

0 +

Days of treatment are suggested for best results.

What is the Most Common Drug that Americans Are Addicted To?

Illicit drug use is one thing and the problems that America faces with it are very real but when it comes to what people in the United States are most addicted to, there’s a substance that plainly outpaces the rest and it’s legal; alcohol. It’s one of our biggest issues in public health however it doesn’t seem to get the same attention, perhaps because of that normalizing.

A 2018 study by the NSDUH found that 86.3% of those aged 18 or older had drunk alcohol at some point in their life and 55.3% said they drank within the last month at the time of the study. This generally just points to the high levels of normalization that we have with drinking.

Problem drinking and alcohol use disorder is a different story.

The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism notes that 26.45% of adults engaged in binge drinking (5 or more drinks within a couple of hours of each other) within the month of the study.

14.4 million adults struggle with alcohol use disorder and only about 8% of those who seek treatment.

Recalling from above, the economic impact of substance abuse in America stood at $740 billion, alcohol abuse makes up $249 billion of that based on numbers from 2010.

Deaths from alcoholic liver disease stood at 22,246 in 2017 and more broadly speaking about 88,000 people die from alcohol-related causes every year. Put differently, alcohol is the third leading preventable cause of death in America. Addiction in America is fueled by the fact that drinking is so prevalent in our culture.

Alcohol abuse is a problem right in front of all our faces and it grabs us when young. 401,000 youth aged 12-17 had alcohol use disorder in 2018. People aged 12 to 20 consumed 11% of all alcohol in the U.S. and 4.3 million binges drank at least once a month.

Struggling with addiction?

All American Detox Center offers detoxification and addiction treatment in Los Angeles. We work with most major insurance providers and are here to help anyone who is struggling with substance abuse. Pick up the phone and call us or request a callback now.

Addiction in America: Death Rates

Without treatment, death is a painful reality that users and their friends and families may eventually face when dealing with drug abuse.

The above breakdown shows that deaths from all these substances happen with troubling regularity and the deeper someone falls into the pit of addiction the more likely that outcome becomes.

Sadly, as has been widely covered in the news of late, deaths from drug use have skyrocketed in recent years. From 1999 to 2018 overdose deaths from all illicit or prescription opioids rose from around 20,000 to over 67,000

Provisional counts made by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention from 2019 are over 69,000 deaths.

With nearly 20 million Americans contending with a substance abuse disorder of some kind, it’s no wonder the rates of death continue to trend up.

A History of Substance Abuse Rates: Then & Now

The National Center for Biotechnology Information makes an interesting observation that most of the modern problems, as well as the benefits, resulting from drug use are the outcome of scientific and technological progress. An interesting idea to consider. 

That thought encapsulates and puts into perspective the recency of some of what we’re dealing with. Alcohol and marijuana have been around for ages but as we pushed the boundaries of science, new compounds were created. In many ways that was miraculous, offering relief to a great many people.

However, like with the ongoing opioid epidemic, use has grown into misuse and ultimately abuse. The prescription drugs that were created have been wildly overprescribed, putting too large of supply in the hands of people that may not have needed it in the first place. Drugs whose effects are so dramatic are easier to get hooked on as the high is something that we naturally chase. Truly a double-edged sword.

Moreover, drugs have gotten more accessible, the rate of death mentioned above points to that.
In the United States, from the 1960s onwards funding increased significantly to research drug abuse. While substance abuse in America has always been with us in some form or another, the ways in which we study it have gotten vastly more sophisticated which in turn allows us to be able to better react.

How to Tackle Drug Addiction in America

Openly acknowledging and naming the problem is particularly important in making any strides towards tackling the issue. If we refuse to talk about it, we can’t make progress in fixing it. Once we’re all more comfortable in discussing addiction and the fact that it’s an ongoing illness it’s much easier to consider options for what to do next.

Recovery from addiction is a road that’s exceedingly difficult to walk alone, there are many pitfalls to going it solo. Falling into drug or alcohol abuse is often influenced by others so it stands to reason that getting out of that hole is more easily achieved with the help of others as well.

What that means at the end of the day is, for addicts and their loved ones, getting professional help in treating this disease presents the best path for success.