It’s estimated that over twenty million American citizens use illegal drugs every month. That equates to a national average of 8.1% of the population. In Los Angeles, the average is actually higher than that, at 8.2% (making it the urban center with the eighth highest drug addiction statistic in the whole country). These are not small numbers. It’s statistically likely that someone in your office has a drug addiction, and that someone in your extended family does too. There’s a one in twelve chance that any given American (over the age of 12) has consumed illegal drugs in the past 30 days, and a slightly higher chance if you’re looking at just the population of LA.
What do these numbers mean? They mean that drug addiction is prevalent enough that it’s easy to become addicted to something, and hard to escape patterns of self-damaging dependency. Despite what some media would have you believe, drug addiction isn’t something that only occurs in low-income populations and seedy neighborhoods. It’s something that happens everywhere, across the board. Since it’s such a common pitfall in our modern society, it becomes difficult to find adequate support and guidance if you decide to attempt to escape your addiction. Drug rehabilitation programs offer just that, but are frequently underused by those who need them most. In 2006, about 4 million people participated in some form of drug rehab in America. It’s estimated that another 20 million required but did not seek out rehab services.
In an urban location like Los Angeles, drug addiction is easier to support than it is to end. Heroin, cocaine and other hard drugs are sold in startling supply. Coupled with these drugs comes a number of serious health risks, as well as the emotional and financial impact that an uncontrolled drug addiction can have on someone’s life and social network. Many wait too long to seek treatment, and are already physically and psychologically damaged when they finally meet up with a trained professional who can help them overcome their drug addiction.
If you’re coping first-hand with the realities of drug addiction in Los Angeles (or anywhere else), you’re not alone. Professional help is available, and will cost less than a continued addiction will. The result is that you’ll be emotionally and physically stable, able to support a family and maintain a job. If you’re considering entering a rehab program, the sooner you act, the easier your recovery will be.