Alcohol and Drug Addiction in Rhode Island
Although Rhode Island is the smallest American state, it has also been witnessing some drug and alcohol problems over the past few decades. In fact, Rhode Island is considered to be ground zero for the opioid epidemic plaguing the entire span and breadth of the United States.
Addiction Facts in Rhode Island
Most of the people who struggle with substance use disorders in Rhode Island started out using drugs with good intentions – particularly those who are addicted to prescription medications. For many of these people, getting the first prescription for an opioid marked a turning point in their lives.
In recent years, the patterns of substance abuse involving both drugs and alcohol show that there is a sharp rise in the cases of addiction being reported on a daily basis in Rhode Island. Sadly, most of these stories involving drugs often lead to fatal outcomes.
The rates of drug overdose have also been rising. Most of these overdoses are linked to fentanyl – one of the most dangerous of all opioids. In October of 2015, for instance, overdose deaths involving fentanyl claimed 20 lives in the state.
The same year, Rhode Island lost a total of 56 lives to several prescription medications while 171 people died as a result of abusing illicit drugs. A further 63 lives were lost due to a combination of both illicit drugs and prescription medications. Although most of the victims were male, females accounted for close to a 3rd of all drug overdose deaths in the state.
Although people aged from 21 to 41 years old accounted for the greatest segment of the Rhode Island population succumbing to drug overdoses, there has been an increase in the total number of people between 12 and 17 years who abuse illicit substances in the state. Additionally, Rhode Island is ranked higher than the total national average for the rates of illicit substance abuse.
Apart from fentanyl, opioid prescription drugs and heroin account for the largest numbers of overdose deaths in the state. Other figures show that cocaine, marijuana, designer drugs, and methamphetamine are commonly abused here. In fact, the government of Rhode Island has estimated that over 20,000 residents are currently struggling with an opioid abuse problem.
Addiction Treatment in Rhode Island
There are many factors that have been playing a role in the rate of addiction treatment in Rhode Island. Chief among them have been chemical dependency and the stigma that is often attached to drug rehab. Statistics, for instance, report that more than 92 percent of local residents in need of rehab services do not receive the help that they require to overcome their conditions.
If you suspect that you might have a drug or alcohol problem in this state, you should not let social stigma or financial difficulties stop you from getting help. Rhode Island has many facilities providing effective addiction treatment services – some of them for free or at a reduced cost – and they can guide you towards full recovery.