Addiction statistics in the United States are staggering. The National Survey of Drug Use and Health Trends in Prevalence of Various Drugs Table is created every year.
The survey contains current information regarding all persons over age 12 and their use of tobacco, drugs, alcohol, and other health-related issues.
It is easy to have an addiction and not realize it. It is also easy to overlook a teen’s addiction. Read on for some great information.
Addiction Statistics in the United States
There is a wide variety of addictive substances, both legal and illegal in the United States. Here are some of the most popular:
The number one psychotropic drug used in the United States is marijuana. More than 11.8 million young adults report using it within the past year.
Marijuana use by students in grades 8-10 was decreasing steadily through the mid-2000s. In 2019 daily use substantially increased among teens.
- 8% of 8th graders report marijuana use in the past year; 6.6% in the past month
- 8% of 10th graders report marijuana use in the past year; 18.4% in the past month
- 7% of 12th graders report marijuana use in the past year; 22.3% in the past month
Vaping THC has is also popular with teens, with 4% of 12th graders using it daily.
The most recent year for data revolving Cocaine use from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics is 2016. During that year there were 11,316 overdose deaths due to cocaine.
Out of those deaths, every 2 out of 5 also involves the use of fentanyl. That same year the CDC shows 42,249 deaths involving opioids. From 2015 to 2016 opioids and fentanyl was the cause of 90% of overdose deaths.
Cocaine use is popular with the following groups:
- 18-25-year-old women
- People over 50 years of age who binge drink or do heavy drinking
- People with a family income below $20,000 a year
- 2% of high school students have tried cocaine
- Boys have a higher tendency to use cocaine than girls
Racial and ethnic groups with the highest number of teen users are Hawaiian/Pacific Islander, American Indian, Alaskan Native, and Hispanic
There were 626,000 Americans dependent on Heroin in 2016. That same year the National Survey on Drug Use and Health heroin addiction statistics show 948,000 Americans using heroin within the past 12 months. The largest number of users are between the ages of 18-25.
The good news is that heroin use among high school students ages 12-17 have been steadily declining, with less than 1% of teens at each grade level using.
Alcohol is the second largest cause of death in the United States. Tobacco and poor diet/sedentary lifestyle are number one.
There are more than 15 million people in the United States who have an alcohol abuse problem, but only 8% of those are undergoing treatment.
- 11% of the alcohol consumed in the United States is consumed by teens and young adults 12 to 20 years of age.
- The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism reports that in excess of 5.3 million women over the age of 18 abuse alcohol.
- 4% of men meet alcohol dependence criteria.
- The National Survey on Drug Use and Health 2016 report state that 19% of teens drink alcohol, 12% drank within the past 30 days.
- According to a National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism Study 2017, alcohol abuse by women increased by 83.7% between 2002 and 2013.
If you believe you or a family member have a problem with alcohol abuse you may want to contact Alcoholics Anonymous or Teen Alcoholics Anonymous for additional information.
5. Prescription Drugs
In the United States every day 2,500 teens between 12-17 years of age abuse prescription pain relievers for the first time. Between 60-70% of teens find the prescription drugs they abuse in their home medicine cabinet.
Here are some interesting statistics about prescription drug abuse:
- The United States has 5% of the world’s population but consumes 75% of the world’s prescription drugs
- 52 million people age 12 and above have taken prescription drugs non-medically
- 76 million of the most abused prescription drugs are: 5.1 million painkillers, 2.2 million tranquilizers, and 1.1 million simulants
- 1 million people have used prescription drugs non-medically within the past 30 days
The National Survey on Drug Use and Health reports that in 2014 in excess of 5,700 teens acknowledged using prescription pain relievers without a prescription in their own name. Teens think prescription drugs are not dangerous.
Psychedelics, more commonly known as hallucinogens, are used by more the 32 million people in the United States. Of those lifetime users, 17% are between the ages of 21 to 64, and 20% are people 30 to 34 years of age.
Here are three popular hallucinogens:
- Mescaline and Peyote—a small cactus with little disc-shaped “buttons” that contain intoxicating liquid that can be chewed fresh or dried, soaked in water to make an intoxicating drink, or ground into a powder to place in capsules or mixed with tobacco or marijuana for smoking
- Ketamine—a short-acting anesthetic with hallucinogenic effects sometimes used by offenders to commit sexual assault; hallucinatory effects generally last 30-60 minutes
- Ecstasy or Molly—a popular party drug available in powder or pill form; used by swallowing pills, tablets, or gel capsules; also available in crystal, powder, or liquid and can be crushed, snorted, or smoked
This is a synthetic opioid pain reliever. When prescribed it is used for the treatment of severe pain, often by cancer patients. It is 50-100% more potent than morphine.
Fentanyl is also made illegally and is popular because it has an effect similar to heroin. Fentanyl is often mixed with heroin or cocaine as a combination drug, sometimes without the buyer’s knowledge.
More than 31,000 people died from overdosing on synthetic opioids (not including methadone) in 2018. Synthetic opioid abuse is scattered throughout the country:
- Between 2017 to 2018 there was an increase in use among those 25 years and older
- Abuse increased in the northeast, south, and western portions of the United States and remained stable in the Midwest.
- Arizona had a 92.5% relative increase
- Missouri and Maryland had a 4.4% per 100,000 resident increase
- West Virginia had the highest synthetic opioid death rate at 34 per 100,000 residents
Opioid addiction statistics show they synthetic version accounted for 67% of all opioid deaths in 2018.
Treatment for Drug Addiction
Drug addiction is a serious problem in the United States. If you or someone you know is suffering from addiction it is important to seek professional help.
Substance abuse has now been recognized as a mental health disorder. This means that treatment for your addiction is often covered in part by health insurance. One such program is Aetna Substance Abuse Coverage. Knowing that you have the insurance coverage you need can help relieve some of the stress you feel in seeking treatment.
You Are Not Alone
Now that you know the drug addiction statistics you know that you are not alone. Treating and beating addiction is difficult but not impossible.
If you have questions, we invite you to take a look at some of our other helpful blogs. Additional information is only a click away on a wide variety of topics.