Washington Drug & Alcohol
Washington has its fair share of drug & alcohol problems. Sharing a border with Canada, Washington is a transshipment point for drugs. In 2007, around 38,000 people entered Washington drug & alcohol treatment. Recently, Washington became one of the first states in history to legalize the sale and use of marijuana.
Washington Drug & Alcohol Statistics
Washington drug & alcohol abuse is on the rise. Binge drinking levels are at the highest they’ve been in 20 years. Experts estimate that while the number of Washington college students who drink is not on the rise, the amount they drink is definitely increasing.
Smoking and methamphetamine use are on the decline. However, Washington drug & alcohol statistics show that heroin abuse is spreading from the inner cities to wealthy suburbs. In response to the rising death toll from heroin overdose, in 2010, Washington officials made the opiate-antidote drug Naloxone available by prescription. This drug has long been used by paramedics and emergency room personnel to pull overdose victims back from the brink of death.
Washington has one of the highest rates of prescription drug abuse rates in the nation. Washington drug & alcohol statistics show that prescription drugs account for the most drug-related overdoses in the state. Prescription drug abuse in Washington State is so rampant mainly because of aggressive prescribing practices along with a lack of oversight by the Department of Health. Washington State ranked 4th highest nationally in per-capita for prescribing methadone in 2006 and 11th for oxycodone. Both of these drugs are well known killers.
Washington Drug & Alcohol Rehab
In response to the growing Washington drug & alcohol problem, many treatment facilities have opened in Washington State. Washington drug & alcohol rehabs vary widely in terms of the treatments they offer during treatment. Most offer traditional treatments like counseling, psychotherapy, group therapy, 12-step support groups and family therapy. Some Washington drug & alcohol treatment facilities also offer music therapy, art therapy, or drama. Holistic treatment centers usually incorporate practices that treat mind, body, and spirit such as acupuncture, yoga, meditation, aromatherapy, equine therapy, and Tai-Chi.
Washington Drug & Alcohol Controversy
There is a lot of controversy surrounding the recent legalization of marijuana in Washington State. Advocates of Washington drug & alcohol abuse prevention worry that the legalization of marijuana will cause more young people to become addicted and need Washington drug & alcohol treatment.
Proponents of legalizing marijuana argue that the new legal status of marijuana will bring in revenue for the state, save tax payers money by not imprisoning people for possession of small amounts, and will cripple brutal Mexican drug cartels, who are estimated to lose several billion dollars in annual revenue. For some voters, the chance to strike a blow against Mexican drug cartels was the deciding factor. These cartels continue to get more violent and bold, with reports of torsos and decapitated heads surfacing every couple of weeks. Whether or not legalization of marijuana will have a significant impact still remains to be seen. Some argue that the cartels will simply increase sale of other illegal narcotics or start their own legal grow operations to make up for the money they will be losing. Others think there will still be a market for inexpensive Mexican marijuana since legal pot will be taxed and likely far pricier.