There are several institutions in America that conduct surveys related to substance abuse on an annual basis. These surveys contain valuable information on America’s substance abuse issues. Here are some statistics from the 2015 survey that you need to be aware of.
- It’s estimated that illicit drug use and alcohol abuse have cost over $36 billion in health care costs (National Institute of Drug Abuse).
- The number of total annual deaths because of drug use is well above 50,000 for 2015. That’s up from just 20,000 in 2002 (Centers for Disease Control Prevention).
- 23.5 million people who are age 12 or older required treatment for a substance abuse problem in 2009 (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration).
- The number of opioid prescriptions (such as oxycodone and hydrocodone) has gone up from 76 million in 1991 to 207 million in 2013 (Senate Caucus on International Narcotics Control).
- In America alone, over 15 million people abuse prescribed medication (Foundation for a Drug-Free World).
- Between 2007 and 2011, heroin use increased by 75% (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration).
- 59% of teenagers believe that prescribed medication is safer than illicit drugs from the street (Foundation for a Drug-Free World).
It’s clear when we look at those above figures and statistics that drug abuse has become an epidemic in this country. It’s very important that people be educated and made aware of the ways drugs and alcohol are affecting our communities. Teenagers are experimenting with drugs and alcohol at a younger and younger age.
It may seem like a hopeless situation, but there are also a lot of positive statistics about addicts who have recovered. For example, while the relapse rate of drug addiction is around 40 to 60%, this is actually lower than the relapse rate of hypertension (50 to 70%) and the relapse rate of asthma (50 to 70%) (National Institute on Drug Abuse).
If you are an addict or alcoholic, do not give up hope. There are a ton of success stories about addicts and alcoholics who have overcome their addictions and gone on to be successful people contributing to society. The most important thing is that you get the help that you need in order to successfully conquer your addiction.