drug addiction Essay

Submitted By dedmonb
Words: 803
Pages: 4


Contemporary Problems/ Substance Abuse
Brandy Dedmon
HSM/210 Human Services In The United States
March 2, 2014
Instructor: Troy Hoppes

2. Drug abuse is an ever increasing problem in society today; the rise in drug related addiction and death is a clear indicator of this negative impact. Those with the experience of drug addiction, be it firsthand or through a friend or a family member, have witnessed the devastating effects and consequences of drug abuse. As of 2013, the estimated number of those considered addicted to illicit drugs is upward of thirty nine million (World Health Organization 2013). I have chosen substance abusers/drug addicts as my target population. The (World Health Organization 2013) states the following on its website; "The contemporary drug problem, characterized by a concentration of illicit drug use among youth, notably young males living in urban settings, and an expanding number of psychoactive substances, appears to have taken a distinctive shape over the past half century”(World Health Organization 2013). There are many factors that contribute to a person’s drug abuse such as poverty, household dysfunction, neglect and abuse, post-traumatic stress disorders. Some of the other socio-economic conditions that may play a role in drug use and addiction are a person’s family history, friends who use, and the area one may live (Center for Disease Control 2014). I am a resident of Fresno, California and drug addiction is a serious problem in our community. The Central Valley is considered to be the Methamphetamine capitol of the United States. We also have a very diverse ethnic population here that has suffered from the negative impacts of drug abuse. I think one of the unmet needs of this population that has a significant impact is those living in poverty. This area suffers from a very high unemployment rate and has a lot of agriculture dependent jobs that have suffered due to a drought that has devastated the farming industry. This poverty problem also leads to more kids dropping out of school and becoming involved with gangs and other criminal elements. Being an agricultural area with
many ethnic groups, Fresno also suffers from problems related to the growth and sale of marijuana. Much of the profit from these sales is used to purchase other narcotics that are sold and used here. Another issue that hinders a resolution to this problem is the lack of educational programs that deal with drug use, especially the rapid rise in prescription abuse. “Here in the United States and other countries as well, the abuse of pharmaceutical drugs has surpassed the use of all illegal drugs combined except cannabis” (United Nations/ World Drug Report 2013). With this rise in non-medical prescription use comes an alarming rise in prescription overdose deaths. Deaths in the United States from prescription opiate overdose have quadrupled since 1999. Prescription overdose deaths now outnumber the deaths from illegal drugs like heroin and cocaine combined (United Nations/ World Drug Report 2013). Misconceptions about their safety are a prevalent factor in the overdose deaths of many prescription drug users. Many who abuse prescription medication assume that because these medications are prescribed