Substance Abuse Trends in New Hampshire – Drugs and Alcohol
The United States has faced many epidemics in its history, from influenza to diphtheria. No epidemic is more dangerous, however, than that of substance abuse. Substance abuse costs our country billions of dollars in healthcare, law enforcement, and addiction recovery each year. According to NIDA For Teens, at least 570,000 Americans die each year from substance abuse, with at least 31,000 of those deaths due to alcohol abuse. No state is immune to this epidemic, and each state has its own unique substance abuse profile.
According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), alcohol abuse and binge drinking is a major New Hampshire issue, particularly among teenagers. The most recent data shows 29.9% of New Hampshire’s young adults ages 12-20 admit alcohol use in the 30 days of the surveys. That’s perilously close to the national average of 33% for young adults. Of teens surveyed, about 28% had their first drink between ages 12 and 14, or even younger. Most teens surveyed said alcohol was easy to access in their homes and other locations, and just over 15% thought it was “not at all wrong” to drink an alcoholic beverage every day. To go along with this, perceived parental disapproval of drinking alcohol is much lower than the national average in New Hampshire – 73.6% vs. 90.6%.
Teens are not the only New Hampshire residents with substance abuse problems, and alcohol is not the only substance residents turn to. Although alcohol dependency has remained among the highest in the country for more than 10 years, heroin and cocaine are also popular. The most recent data indicates heroin use is big among New Hampshire residents ages 21-25, and that almost 1000 New Hampshire residents have entered treatment for heroin use.
A late 2015 CNN report reveals opiates and opioids are the drugs of choice for many New Hampshire residents. In the state’s largest city of Manchester, the police department was called to 75 opiate overdose deaths in 2015. An interviewed law enforcement official said the department received at least 13 overdose calls a week at one point. Naloxone, meant to counteract heroin and opiate abuse, was administered in over 2,000 overdose incidents in Manchester alone.
As is the case across the country, heroin and opiate addictions feed each other in New Hampshire. The two drugs are easily mixed, and prescription drug users will often combine them for increased euphoria or relaxation. Many other prescription drug users turn to heroin if they can no longer obtain their drug of choice or if crackdowns make them leery of trying to get it. According to the most recent survey from New Hampshire’s Chief Medical Examiner’s office, opioid and opiate overdose deaths increased sharply between 2012 and 2015. The most current data indicates opiate use numbers are still “staggering.”
Shortfalls of New Hampshire Substance Abuse Care
According to the most recent statistics, at least 25% of New Hampshire residents feel substance abuse is the biggest problem facing their state. However, like many states, New Hampshire falls short regarding substance abuse care. According to the Concord Monitor, the New Hampshire medical examiner’s office was unable to finish calculating 2015 drug deaths before it was inundated with 2016 totals. New Hampshire, ranks third highest per capita for drug abuse deaths, falling behind only West Virginia and New Mexico. As noted, the prescription opiate problem in particular spikes each year, leaving resources scrambling to cope. With so much attention on one type of drug, it’s also difficult for other addicts to find and receive adequate treatment.
Driving New Hampshire’s prescription opiate addiction is a recent spike in fentanyl use. Law enforcement officials say fentanyl “flows” into New Hampshire across the Massachusetts border, often traveling north from Mexico’s Sinaloa drug cartel. Assistant Special Agent John DeLena of the DEA says fentanyl is becoming more deadly because New Hampshire residents are lacing it with heroin and other cutting agents law enforcement haven’t been able to identify.
Fentanyl is 50 to 100 times more powerful than heroin, and at least 100 times more powerful than morphine. Unfortunately, like other Americans, New Hampshire residents don’t always know they’re purchasing fentanyl along with their heroin or prescription pills. Additionally, fentanyl is not prepared or packaged with precision; the goal seems to be getting it over the Massachusetts border and into the hands of users as quickly as possible. Despite New Hampshire’s use of the overdose drug naloxone, and efforts to stop fentanyl from coming into the state, law enforcement officials can’t keep up. Fentanyl has many analogs, including China White, which is marketed as pure heroin. It is impossible to track and curtail every fentanyl analog.
According to the most recent reports, addiction is “dominating the political conversation” in New Hampshire. However, local communities struggle to serve the addicts already searching for treatment. New Hampshire’s treatment facilities often lack counselors and staff, partially because of the state’s truncated workforce. Although proposals for new treatment facilities are on legislators’ desks, pushing them through takes time and manpower New Hampshire doesn’t always possess. Once the proposals are approved, the struggle circles back to finding enough people to run the facilities and provide adequate treatment.
The Treatment Center Provides Care from Florida
New Hampshire residents who can’t find needed treatment at home will find a refuge at Florida’s Treatment Center of the Palm Beaches, LLC. We have been in business for decades, and our center is one of the most trusted recovery resources in the United States.
Our treatment experts have dealt with every substance common to New Hampshire, including alcohol and fentanyl. However, even if your drug of choice is not well-known in your state, we can help you. Florida, especially Miami, is a popular place for substance abuse due to our Miami shipping port, as well as many other access and egress points. Thus, our experts have seen almost every type of addiction and know how to tailor treatment plans toward them. When you come to The Treatment Center, you will receive an individualized recovery plan.
Come to the Treatment Center
Our team is tenacious; we will stick with you until you achieve complete recovery, and give you the coping mechanisms to maintain sobriety at home. We focus on treating the whole person, using holistic, evidence-based medicine so you never feel like just another patient. If you or a loved one living in New Hampshire is fighting addiction, contact us now.