Overall, the total number of people afflicted with opioid addiction in the United States is an overwhelming problem. In fact, every year the graph only shows an ascending trend. While the age-adjusted rate of drug overdose fatalities rose from 6.1 to 16.3 per 100,000 people in 2015, it climbed to 19.8 per 100,000 in 2016. A 21 percent higher rate was clocked in 2016 compared to 2015. Moreover, it was more than three times the rate in 1999. Drug overdose deaths also increased from 52,404 in 2015 to 63,600 in 2016.
These increases cut across gender, age, race and ethnicity and have affected rural and urban areas alike. With around 35 deaths occurring per 100,000 people, the highest rates of drug overdose deaths were witnessed among adults aged 25–34, 35–44 and 45–54 in 2016. The results of the third American Family Survey, an extensive annual poll conducted by YouGov for the Deseret News and the BYU Center for the Study of Elections and Democracy, provides a new understanding about the problem of addiction in the American families.
Conducted on as many as 3,000 adults, it highlights that the number of people who report addictions in their families is more than the two times of the users admitting of being addicted to addictive substances, such as heroin, opioids, alcohol, etc. The findings of the survey also displayed the key differences in the approach toward addiction among all kinds of populations.
Key findings of annual survey
According to the survey, around 5 percent of adults reported their addiction to opioids or heroin, 6 percent revealed to be suffering from alcohol addiction and 4 percent claimed to be hooked on marijuana. As mentioned above, those reporting addiction among family members were more than two times of the users reporting their own addiction.
While opioid addiction within the family was reported by 12 percent, around 15 percent highlighted alcohol addiction and 10 percent disclosed marijuana addiction among their family members. Compared to women, a higher rate of addiction was reported by men. Moreover, both white and black respondents reported less addiction than Hispanics. Based on the socioeconomic status, more addictions were reported by people located in the urban areas than those in the rural places.
Moreover, they are more prevalent among low-income people than those with high income. It was also observed that people who have followed the sequence of success, such complete education, get a job, marry and have children, are comparatively less prone toward indulging in substances. Similarly, people living in an extended family are at a lesser risk of developing an addiction.
The above findings underline the importance of a family in a person’s life. The users when queried about people responsible for drug addictions blamed themselves, dealers, government policies, doctors, insurance companies, etc. and leveled the least blame on their family. This corroborates the crucial role played by a family in decreasing the risk of addiction.
The survey found a close correlation between addiction and personal economic crisis as approximately 12 percent of respondents who cited financial problems had an addiction to opioids. The numbers were similar for marijuana addiction, but somewhat lower for alcohol addiction.
It is quite difficult to determine whether people get addicted to substances because of their personal and financial woes or they witness financial hardships due to their addiction. Although the rates are relatively low, the survey presents evidence to suggest that financial hardship is closely knitted to the problem of addiction.
Get help to achieve sobriety
Since alcohol is a legal substance, addiction to alcohol is more common. Some people addicted to alcohol may even function fairly well at work and could be underestimating their addiction. However, opioid and heroin addiction is harder to disguise as it turns life upside down and does not allow individuals to function in daily life. Eventually, both types of addiction take a toll on human lives, leading to social isolation, job loss and breakdown in interpersonal relationships.
If you or your loved one is battling an addiction to prescription drugs, contact one of the credible substance abuse treatment centers in Texas. The Texas Substance Abuse Helpline assists in accessing the finest treatment centers in Texas that specialize in delivering evidence-based intervention plans. Call at our 24/7 helpline number 866-971-2658 or chat online to know more about the best substance abuse treatment programs in Texas.