Tuesday, April 9, 2024

How Common Is Addiction In The Us

What Do We Know About The Opioid Crisis

5ï¸?⣠Five Common Denominators of Individuals with Drug Addiction and Alcoholism – Reach Recovery
  • Roughly 21 to 29 percent of patients prescribed opioids for chronic pain misuse them.6
  • Between 8 and 12 percent of people using an opioid for chronic pain develop an opioid use disorder.6
  • An estimated 4 to 6 percent who misuse prescription opioids transition to heroin.79
  • About 80 percent of people who use heroin first misused prescription opioids.7
  • Update: Among 38 states with prescription opioid overdose death data, 17 states saw a decline between 2017-2018 none experienced a significant increase.11
  • Likelihood of developing an opioid use disorder depends on many factors, including length of time a person is prescribed to take opioids for acute pain, and length of time that people continue taking opioids .

How To Get Help For Drug Abuse

If you or a loved one needs help for drug abuse, professional help is recommended. Withdrawal and detox can be unpleasant, difficult processes no one should have to experience alone. If youre ready to get help for drug addiction, trust professionals with the experience and knowledge to make a long-lasting impact on your life. Professional intervention is found to prevent relapse more than transitioning into sobriety on your own.

Treatment For Benzodiazepines Abuse

A medically supervised detox, where the drug is slowly tapered down, may be the first step for benzodiazepine treatment. Replacement medications may be given to treat any issues that benzodiazepines were given for in the first place, such as seizures. Inpatient or outpatient programs that provide behavioral and medication-assisted treatment are good choices for those who need treatment for benzodiazepines misuse.

Also Check: How To Fight Addiction On Your Own

Deaths From Substance Use Disorders

Alcohol disorders have the highest death toll amongst substance use disorders

In the visualization we see the breakdown of deaths from substance use disorders by substance type. Note that these figures include only direct deaths from drug dependence.

Collectively, all substances shown in red are classified as illicit drugs.

We see that globally alcohol has the highest death toll amongst substance use disorders. Deaths from opioid overdoses have increased significantly in recent years and now exceed 100,000 globally.

This data can be explored for any country or region using the change country toggle on the interactive chart.

Deaths from alcohol are high across Eastern Europe illicit drug deaths are high across North America

In the interactive visualization we see death rates from alcohol and drug use disorders, measured as the number of deaths per 100,000 individuals.

We see much higher rates in the USA and across several countries in Eastern Europe. In the USA, this was dominated by illicit drug dependence, whereas alcoholism was much more common in Russia and Eastern Europe.

Related charts number of deaths from substance use disorders.This map shows the number of deaths from substance use disorders each year. This chart shows the breakdown of annual deaths between alcohol and illicit drug use disorders.

Many who die from substance use disorders are young

How Alcohol Abuse Affects The Body

10 Most Common Addictions in the United States

The effects of too much alcohol on the body are devastating. Health consequences of heavy alcohol use include inflammation of the stomach, inflammation of the liver, bleeding in the stomach and esophagus, impotence, permanent nerve and brain damage , and inflammation of the pancreas. Long-term overuse of alcohol can also increase the risk and severity of pneumonia and tuberculosis damage the heart, leading to heart failure and cause cirrhosis of the liver, leading to liver failure.

Also Check: What Is The Addiction Network

Dont Become A Statistic: Get Help For Drug And Alcohol Addiction Today

Our country used to think of substance abuse as an ethical or moral failure rather than the deadly disease that it actually is.1 This could be one factor why today, only 10% of people with a substance use disorder receive treatment.1 Additionally, of the 40% of people who suffer from addiction and mental health problems , less than half of those people obtain treatment.27

However, there are treatment options available for you or anyone who has an addiction. While there are still improvements to be made in the accessibility and quality of rehabs, recent changes to our health system have made it easier to find and get into appropriate recovery programs.35

While it may seem like a daunting task, finding a suitable recovery program is possible. If you are thinking about going to rehab, consider reaching out to a trusted loved one for support throughout the process.

Next, talk to your primary care doctor about possible referrals to a treatment program or addiction specialist in your area. There are 3,500 board-certified doctors who specialize in addiction in the United States, so its possible to find one near you.36 If you have health insurance, consider contacting your insurance provider to identify what services are covered and to obtain referrals to suitable treatment providers.

Addiction Treatment At The Dawn Rehab Thailand

We have listed nine of the most common addictions in the world, though there are also others that people can become addicted to. The best thing that you can do when a substance or process addiction is taking over your life is to get help as soon as possible. The Dawn Medical Rehab and Wellness Centre is a reputable drug and alcohol rehabilitation centre in Chiang Mai, Thailand that offers highly-personalised and intensive treatment.

If you or someone you love is facing a problem with addiction, contact us today.

Also Check: How To Get Rid Of Smoking Addiction

How Common Is Addiction

Addiction is unfortunately very common. Around 20 million people in the United States suffer from a substance use disorder. A substance use disorder often refers to substances that unnaturally increase dopamine levels in the reward pathway. These substances include prescription painkillers, illicit substances, nicotine or alcohol . Substance addictions are the most well-known form of addictions but people can also suffer from behavioral addictions which include the following:

  • Exercising or dieting.
  • Video gaming and the internet.

Genes And Substance Abuse

Addiction Statistics


is the process of parents passing on traits to their children at birth.4 Children receive 46 chromosomes containing thousands of genes from their parents. Genes determine the specific traits that a child will have, such as:5

  • Physical traits: determine a persons outer appearance, such as eye and hair color.
  • Behavioral traits: influence the way a person acts, such as how shy or outgoing a person is.
  • Predisposition to medical conditions: can also be impacted by traits and may increase a persons risk of getting a disease, such as cancer.

Although genes play a role in defining a persons traits, environmental factors can also impact traits.5 Environmental influences can even alter a trait.5

Addiction is considered moderately to highly heritable, meaning that genetics play a significant role in addiction.6 In other words, people who have relatives with addiction problems have an increased risk of developing an addiction themselves.

The influence of genetics on addiction varies from drug to drug. Below is the breakdown of heritability of dependence on or abuse of specific drugs.6

  • Cocaine: .72 heritability or 72%
  • Opiates: .70 heritability or 70%
  • Alcohol: .55 heritability or 55%
  • Sedatives: .50 heritability or 50%
  • Hallucinogens: .39 heritability of 39%

Specific genes that have been linked to addiction include:7

Recommended Reading: How To Speak To An Addict

Statistics On Addiction To Specific Substances


  • About 966,000 American adults struggled with a cocaine use disorder in 2017.1
  • That same year, 637,000 people age 12 and older received treatment for a cocaine use disorder either in their last or current stay in rehabilitation.7


  • About 652,000 people age 12 and older had a heroin use disorder in 2017.1
  • Almost a quarter of people who abuse heroin will become addicted to it.12
  • Heroin use has risen in most demographic groups in the United States over the past 2 decades, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports.4
  • Individuals addicted to alcohol are 2 times more likely to also be addicted to heroin, while those addicted to marijuana are 3 times more likely, individuals addicted to cocaine are 15 times more likely, and people addicted to prescription drugs are 40 times more likely.4
  • The highest at-risk population for heroin addiction is non-Hispanic white males between the ages of 18 and 25 who live in large cities.4

Prescription drugs:

  • Approximately 4.1 million American adults over the age of 12 battled a marijuana use disorder in 2017.1
  • The majority of people struggling with in 2017 were between the ages of 12 and 25.1
  • Almost 6% of full-time college students in the United States were daily marijuana smokers in 2014. This is more than triple the number of daily smokers in this population 20 years prior.14


Recognizing Addiction In A Loved One

When a person is in the grips of severe alcohol or drug addiction, they may be unable to help themselves. It is often the responsibility of family members and friends to spot addiction in a loved one. Recognizing addiction is an important first step in getting the affected person the help they need to recover. Possible signs and symptoms that a loved one may be suffering from a substance use disorder include:

  • Poor performance at work or school, such as missed deadlines, incomplete assignments, a drop in grades, or job loss.
  • A lack of interest in previously enjoyed hobbies
  • Neglecting relationships, or having problems in relationships because of substance use
  • Taking unnecessary risks
  • Physical withdrawal symptoms like sweating, trembling, or vomiting, when the person does not have the substance
  • Increased tolerance to the substance

Identifying drug or alcohol abuse early allows the person to get help before the potentially irreversible consequences of addiction occur, such as acquiring an infection like HIV through shared needles, losing employment, permanently damaging relationships, getting arrested or incarcerated, damaging ones reputation, or losing custody of a child. With time, family and children of a person suffering from addiction can become severely impacted by the behavior.

Recommended Reading: Is 6mg Of Nicotine Addictive

What Is Substance Abuse

Substance abuse, also known as drug abuse or alcohol abuse, refers to a chronic pattern of frequent or excessive substance use in a way that is harmful to health and well-being.

Examples of this include:

  • taking drugs for reasons other than prescribed
  • taking higher doses than prescribed
  • taking drugs in ways other than prescribed

Drug Overdose Death Statistics

10 Most Common Addictions in Utah

Drug overdose is the leading cause of accidental death in the United States. Drug overdose can occur in people addicted to drugs and those who are not.

After the number of fatal overdoses across the U.S. fell in 2018, data from 2019 showed a sharp increase, with 2020 estimated to be the deadliest year on record.

What recent data on drug overdoses in the United States shows:

Rates for overdose deaths involving specific drugs:

  • Over 50 percent of psychostimulant-related overdose deaths involve opioids.
  • Synthetic opioids other than methadone, such as fentanyl, are involved in over 70 percent of all drug overdose deaths.

The scope of drug overdose fatalities in the United States long-term:

  • Nearly 841,000 people have died due to fatal drug overdose since 1999.
  • From 2010 to 2019, drug overdose deaths have more than doubled, from 38,329 deaths in 2010 to over 70,000 in 2019.

Increased drug overdose death rates in 2020:

  • Drug overdose deaths were up 11.4 percent in the first four months of 2020 compared to the same period the previous year.
  • Approximately 81,230 drug overdose deaths occurred between June 2019 and May 2020, with the largest increase recorded between March and May of 2020.
  • The year of 2020termed by some as the pandemic yearis estimated to be the deadliest year for drug overdose deaths on record in the United States.

Also Check: What To Say To An Addict Who Wants To Use

Heroin Overdose Information In The United States

The potential of overdosing from heroin is a sad reality for its users. Close to 15,000 people died from drug overdoses in 2018 involving heroin in the U.S., which is a rate of almost five deaths for every 100,000 Americans. While overall decreases in overdose deaths involving heroin were seen, the number of fatalities is still more than seven times greater in 2018 than there were in 1999. Close to a third of all opioid-related deaths involve heroin.

We Treat Both Addiction And Co

Let that sink in for a moment, and then lets go further.

Youre a typical American, arent you? Think about everyone you know. Are you surprised that YOU PERSONALLY KNOW 60 addicts and alcoholics?

Wait a minute, you might say. Most of those are just acquaintances. That doesnt REALLY count.

Fair enough.

That same article estimates that most Americans know between 10 and 25 other people well enough to be counted as trusted real friends.

That means in your personal circle of friends people you know, trust, and maybe even love you might be close to as many as three people who are addicted to illegal drugs, alcohol, or prescription medications.

That is what all of these statistics mean ANYONE can suffer from the disease of addiction.

The addict or alcoholic in your life can be your husband or wife, one of your children, your brother or sister, your mother or father, someone you work with, or your best friend ANYONE.

It might even be YOU.

When you feel alienated and alone, it can be difficult to find the strength needed to deal with all of the difficulties caused by the disease of addiction.

But as you can see from all of the statistics YOU ARE NOT ALONE. Others are and have been where you are, and they have been able to regain their sobriety and return to a stable life. Take comfort and draw strength from that knowledge, because with help, you can do the same.

Read Also: How To Get Off An Addiction

How Are Addictions Diagnosed

To diagnose addiction, your provider may refer you to a psychiatrist, psychologist or a drug and alcohol counselor. Your healthcare provider will ask you questions about your activities and patterns of substance use. Tell your provider if youve tried to stop drinking or doing drugs, and why. Share whether youve had physical or psychological withdrawal symptoms whenever you have tried to stop.

Your provider will do a physical exam and may obtain a blood and urine test from you. These tests give your provider information about your overall health. They can also help rule out underlying health conditions.

Deaths From Substance Use

America’s Most Abused Drugs (Mental Health Guru)

Substance use is indirectly and directly responsible for 11.8 million deaths each year

How many people die from substance use each year?To answer this, we need to define two aspects: what substances i.e. drugs do we include in this definition and what do we mean by a death caused by substance use does this include only direct deaths or also the increased risk of premature death from moderate, long-term drug use?

The Global Burden of Disease is a major global study on the causes and risk factors for death and disease published in the medical journal The Lancet.2,3

The Global Burden of Disease study identifies and provides estimates for substance use deaths through both pathways. The first is a direct death from a substance use disorder. A substance use disorder is characterized by meeting the criteria for drug dependence as defined by the World Health Organizations International Classification of Diseases .4 Alcohol dependence or illicit drug dependence are included in substance use disorders deaths from these disorders can be considered drug overdoses, with the terms being used interchangeably in the study literature.5

In the visualization we summarize the results of the Global Burden of Disease study on the number of deaths attributed to substance use: this is differentiated between indirect deaths as a risk factor from smoking, alcohol and illicit drug use and direct deaths from substance use disorders of alcohol and illicit drugs .

Also Check: Is Acid An Addictive Drug

What Is Substance Use And Addiction

Many people use substances such as drugs or alcohol to relax, have fun, experiment, or cope with stressors, however, for some people the use of substances or engaging in certain behaviours can become problematic and may lead to dependence.

Addiction is a complex process where problematic patterns of substance use or behaviours can interfere with a persons life. Addiction can be broadly defined as a condition that leads to a compulsive engagement with a stimuli, despite negative consequences.i This can lead to physical and/or psychological dependence. Addictions can be either substance related or process-related, also known as behavioural addictions .ii Both can disrupt an individuals ability to maintain a healthy life, but there are numerous support and treatment options available.

A simple way of understanding and describing addiction is to use the 4Cs approach:

  • Craving
  • Loss of control of amount or frequency of use
  • Compulsion to use
  • Continued substance use despite consequencesiii

How common is substance use and addiction?

Substance use is quite common on an international scale and statistics vary depending on the substance being consumed. It is estimated that nearly 5% of the worlds population have used an illicit substance, 240 million people around the world use alcohol problematically, and approximately 15 million people use injection drugs.iv

Health Effects Of Alcohol

Abuse of alcohol can lead to many serious health problems and death:1

  • In 2015, 47% of the more than 78,000 deaths due to liver disease involved alcohol.
  • In 2013, 48% of deaths due to cirrhosis were alcohol-related.
  • In 2009, liver disease related to alcohol was the number one cause of about one in three liver transplants in our nation.
  • Excessive drinking increases the risk of all types of cancers including the esophagus, mouth, pharynx, liver, larynx, and breast.

Also Check: How To Quit Sugar Addiction

The Most Important Contribution Of This Study Is That It Provides The 1st Geo

Information on how and why these less severe individuals resolved their substance use problem, on the other hand, may be leveraged to help the 16 million individuals each year with a substance use disorder that seek no services whatsoever the vast majority of whom do not perceive a need for treatment but are nevertheless at risk for negative life consequences that can also put others around them at risk .



Kelly, J. F., Bergman, B. G., Hoeppner, B. B., Vilsaint, C. L., & White, W. L. . Prevalence and pathways of recovery from drug and alcohol problems in the United States population: Implications for practice, research, and policy.Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 181, 162-169. doi: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2017.09.028

**Note: One or more authors of this study were Recovery Research Institute Staff, including the director and/or other research scientists. As with all summaries, staff made the greatest possible effort to recognize and account for any potential biases in the review of this article.

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