Alcohol and Drug Addiction in Florida

Although the entire United States has been struggling with a widespread drug and alcohol epidemic, Florida seems to have been hit particularly hard. In particular, controlled prescription medications are increasingly being abused across the state. These drugs are now considered to be the leading cause of overdose deaths within the southern part of the state.

At the same time, however, other drugs continue posing serious health threats to local residents. These drugs include marijuana, methamphetamine, heroin, cocaine, and alcohol. This goes to show that it is increasingly becoming difficult for addicts to deal with their substance use disorders in the state.

Addiction Facts in Florida

Miami is among the major American ports. As such, it is not entirely surpassing that the southern part of Florida has now been classified as a HIDTA – high-intensity drug trafficking area – by the Drug Enforcement Administration.

Additionally, the FMEC – the Florida Medical Examiners Commission – released a report in 2015 showing that the total number of deaths related to drugs and/or alcohol increased by 13.9 percent from 2014.

Although every drug has been causing problems in Florida, the biggest issue involves prescription pain relief medications. This is particularly because these medications often cause people to develop other forms of substance use disorders. These disorders usually involve other dangerous substances like fentanyl and heroin.

While comparing the rise in the total number of deaths linked to drugs in Florida between 2013 and 2015, studies found that the following drugs contributed to the largest increase among local residents:

  • Cocaine – 59 percent increase
  • Alcohol – 32 percent increase
  • Fentanyl – 281 percent increase
  • Heroin – 179 percent increase
  • Morphine – 58 percent increase

Further, prescription benzodiazepines and opioids are now considered to be gateway drugs that cause people to start abusing heroin.  Addiction to these drugs often leads to many local residents to turn to more readily available and cheaper alternative heroin.

However, benzodiazepines were considered to be the leading drug-related cause of death in the state. They were closely followed by both cocaine and morphine. From these figures, nordiazepam, Valium, and Xanax were the most commonly abused benzodiazepines in Florida.

Addiction Treatment in Florida

Even though the substance abuse statistics in Florida have been troubling, other reports show that comprehensive and holistic recovery programs have been providing hope to many addicts in the state.

There are also several centers that provide addiction treatment and rehabilitation services throughout the state. If you have a substance use disorder, you might want to consider checking into these Florida drug rehab facilities to get the help that you require.


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