Drug abuse in the United States has reached epidemic proportions. It has caused unfathomable damage to the American family. The consequences of America’s drug problem have had a detrimental effect on the nation as a whole. The Office of National Drug Control Policy reports that annually it cost more than $181 billion to deal with the repercussions caused by untreated drug addiction.
Drug rehab programs for example have proven to be an effective way to care for individuals who have long-standing drug addictions. They do this by providing their patients with a mixture of physical, emotional, and psychological help. The goal of drug addiction facilities is to help people start a lifetime of sobriety.
Drug Addiction Statistics and Facts
It is estimated that in the United States less than 15 percent of individuals who need drug rehabilitation actually receive the treatment they need. The ripple effects of this are felt throughout the entire nation.
In 2009, over 4 ½ million drug emergency medical situations were reported, according to the group Drug Abuse Warning Network. Over 200,000 people went to the ER because of heroin overdoses or other incidences relating to heroin use. This number is two times that of those who went to the ER for cocaine and marijuana.
Drug use is rampant among high school students. Approximately 5 percent of high school seniors around the world have used meth at least one time. And approximately 3 percent of high school students as a whole have used meth within the last year. Three percent may seem like a small number until one realizes that there are more than 14 ½ million teenagers in high school.
There was a poll that was taken by the New York Times that showed that over 1 ½ million people abuse cocaine on a regular basis. Approximately 2.5 percent of everyone surveyed said that at one time or another they used cocaine in their life.
The National Survey on Drug Use and Health reported that in 2009, more than 10 ½ million Americans drove an automobile while they were intoxicated with legal drugs. Add to that the millions of individuals who drove while drunk and the weight of this problem becomes very apparent.
Getting on the Road to Recovery
Drug addiction negatively alters the chemical balance in a person’s body as well as changes the way certain chemicals function in the brain. When a person is addicted to drugs, they become physically and emotionally reliant on the substance in order to function at a normal level. Neurotransmitters are shifted and the brain is no longer able to produce normal levels of the chemicals that create a sensation of euphoria, focus, energy, or contentedness. For this reason, the very first step in the recovery process is the drug detox.
When a person stops using drugs, their body goes through withdrawal. This withdrawal is felt in physical symptoms such as headaches, body pains, nausea, and vomiting. It is also experienced through psychological responses including problems with memory, excessive fear, extreme depression, and cognitive delays. When a recovering drug addict feels these negative physical and mental responses, it becomes harder for them to abstain from using drugs.
Drug detox helps a person make it through the withdrawal symptoms in a safe and comfortable way. Being able to detox in a recovery center surrounded by professionals ensures that addicts will complete the withdrawal part of the recovery without relapsing. Some facilities will use medications to temper cravings and minimize the emotional and chemical highs and lows that can lead to a relapse. At the same time, recovering addicts are given proper nutrition and proper hydration, which ensures that their bodies heal from the damage they received throughout the years of drug addiction.
The Benefits of Drug Rehabilitation
For most people, drug addiction cannot be overcome until they seek professional treatment. Drug rehabilitation centers create an inviting environment that is conducive to rehabilitation.
They provide personalized treatment plans that include diagnostic testing, psychological assessments, as well as physical and emotional exams that allow caregivers to tailor treatment to patients. Group and family therapy sessions are available as well as 12 step meetings and other time-tested methods. Recovering addicts receive life skills training that helps them to stay sober once they leave the facility.
They are given the skills that help them cope with the problems they face without resorting to drug use. Millions of people can attest to the benefits that come from attending local detox clinics in New Jersey, throughout the US, and around the world.