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New Drug Addiction Statistics Provide Interesting
Trends and Facts About Drug Addiction

Here are some of the latest drug addiction statistics and facts about drug addiction provided by the National Institute for Drug Abuse and the ongoing studies they and their various partners conduct.

    Drug Addiction Statistics and Facts:

  • According to SAMHSA’s (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) survey on drug use and health in 2006, almost 24 million Americans aged 12 or older needed treatment for an illicit drug or alcohol abuse problem. That’s almost 10% of the population aged 12 or older. Of these, only 2.5 million – almost 11 percent of those who needed treatment – received it at a special facility.
  • Most admissions to special addiction treatment facilities were for alcohol treatment (40%), heroin and other opiates accounted for the largest percentages of drug-related admissions (18%), with marijuana coming in next at 16% for treatment admissions.
  • Of these admissions, they were demographically divided as 59% being white, 21% African-American, and 14% Hispanic or Latino.
  • The majority of patients entering treatment were 20–24 years old (14.4 percent), followed by those 25 to 29 (14 percent) and 40 to 44 (13.9 percent).
  • Drug-related Emergency Department (ED) visits averaged 1.7 drugs per visit, including illicit drugs and inhalants, alcohol, prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) pharmaceuticals, dietary supplements, and nonpharmaceutical inhalants.
  • Of all Emergency Department drug-related visits, cocaine was involved in 20%, marijuana 13%, heroin 8%, stimulants (including amphetamines and methamphetamines) 7%, and unspecified opiates involved in 4% of visits.
  • Teenage and adolescent use of illicit drugs methamphetamine, amphetamines, cocaine and hallucinogens is steadily decreasing - with attitudes toward substance abuse, often seen as harbingers of change in use, showing many favorable changes.
  • However use of prescription narcotics Vicodin and OxcyContin has increased among teenagers and adolescents over the last 5 years. Prevalence rates of marijuana use remain steady.
  • Nearly 75 percent of all adult illicit drug users are employed, as are most binge and heavy alcohol users. Studies show that when compared with non–substance abusers, substance-abusing employees are more likely to change jobs frequently, be late to or absent from work, be involved in work place accidents, and are more likely to file a workers’ compensation claim.

These drug addiction statistics and facts about drug addiction paint a frightening picture, but the many ‘hidden’ and difficult to measure facts in terms of lives lost, families destroyed, money wasted, and communities ravaged due to drug addiction means that there is so much work that still needs to be done on the war against drugs.

Knowledge and education is where it all starts, which is where we’re trying to help with the information provided on this site. So having finished here, take a look at the causes of drug addiction and what recovery from drug addiction entails. Then feel free to browse around should anything else be of interest.

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