Alcohol and Drug Addiction in Wisconsin
The entire span and breadth of the United States – including seemingly innocent states like Wisconsin – has been affected by a rise in the rates of substance abuse and addiction. In 2015, for instance, more than 52,000 people lost their lives across the country as a direct result of substance abuse.
While the federal government has been taking steps to deal with the drug scourge, even the governments of states such as Wisconsin have been focusing on reducing, preventing, and eliminating the same problem among their residents.
Addiction Rates in Wisconsin
Although alcohol is among the most commonly abused substances, there are many other drugs that have been getting out of control. The Population Health Institute at the University of Wisconsin as well as the Department of Health in the state, for instance, reported that more than 9 percent of adults in the state abuse prescription medications by using them for a non-medical reason.
Eventually, most of these people end up abusing illicit drugs like heroin because it provides similar effects as prescription medications. Another report showed that the state lost a total of 873 lives as a result of illicit opioid abuse in 2015 alone.
Even so, studies have found that the death rate linked to drugs in Wisconsin is lower than the same rate at the national level. However, these numbers are still high enough to be concerning.
That said, the drugs that are most commonly abused in this state include alcohol, heroin, other prescription opioids, and benzodiazepines such as Valium and Xanax. Further, the use of heroin and opioids has been increasing in the state for the past few years.
Most of the people who have developed a dependence on prescription opioids often get to a point where they are no longer able to afford and/or access these medications. When this happens, they often replace their prescriptions with heroin because it produces similar effects but is more affordable and widely available.
Addiction Treatment in Wisconsin
Wisconsin has passed legislation that allows pharmacies to dispense naloxone as an over the counter drug. This law has saved many lives because naloxone is effective at reversing the adverse effects of an opioid overdose.
The government of Wisconsin also works in tandem with the Department of Health Services in the state to provide other addiction treatment services. For instance, they formed the STARP – the Strengthening Treatment Access and Retention Program – to ensure that residents receive quality addiction treatment and rehabilitation services.
If you suspect that you might be struggling with a substance use disorder, you should enroll in any of the drug rehabs in this state that provide recovery services to people like you. This could potentially save your life in Wisconsin.