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Addiction Statistics 2023

Addiction and Mental Health Treatment California


A recent poll by KFF published in July 2023 shows that a staggering two-thirds of the population polled have been addicted to alcohol or drugs. A shocking 106,000 overdose deaths have been reported in 2022. Nearly 30% of those polled say that they or someone in their family has been addicted to prescribed or illegal opioids such as heroin and fentanyl.

As millions of Americans are struggling with addiction and substance use, abuse and related disorders, battling other challenges such as mental health issues, homelessness, and overdose deaths, it is ever more important to create an awareness about addiction. Here are the addiction statistics for 2023.

Table of Contents

Substance Abuse Crisis

Substance use and addiction is significantly more prevalent since COVID-19 pandemic. This includes alcohol, prescription painkillers, or illegal drugs. One in ten adults report that someone in their family have died of a drug overdose.

When polled about their family members,

Alcohol and prescription drugs remain the most used and abused substances. These reports would give treatment centers a better idea of where to concentrate their treatment and prevention efforts.

Opioid Addiction

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has officially declared the opioid epidemic as a public health emergency in 2017. Overdose (OD) deaths involving opioids increased 519.38% from 1999 to 2019. Statistics have not improved much since then. 

Synthetically manufactured drugs are becoming more accessible to illegal drug users. The most well-known is fentanyl, a synthetic opioid largely responsible for the recent rapid spike in opioid overdose fatalities. The term “research chemicals” is often used to designate a broad range of medications available in pharmacies, drug stores and online stores. The rapidity with which new medications reach the market is cause for alarm since little is known about the potential for harm or addiction offered by these synthetic drugs.

  • 29% report someone in family addicted to opioids
  • 33% White
  • 28% Hispanic
  • 23% Black
  • 42% living in rural areas
  • 30% living in suburban areas
  • 23% living in urban areas

Most Abused Substances

37.3 million Americans, 12 or older have reported currently using illegal drugs as of a recent year statistics.  

  • 138.543 million or 50.0% of people aged 12 and over have illicitly used drugs in their lifetime.

59.277 million or 21.4% of people 12 and over have used illegal drugs or misused prescription drugs. 138.522 million Americans 12 and over drink alcohol. 57.277 million people use tobacco or nicotine products (vape). 13.5% of Americans 12 and over used drugs in the last month, a 3.8% increase year-over-year (YoY). 

28.320 million or 20.4% of them have an alcohol use disorder. 25.4% of illegal drug users have a drug disorder. 24.7% of those with drug disorders have an opioid disorder; this includes prescription pain relievers or “pain killers” and heroin).

Drug Related Overdose Deaths

A shocking 106,000 overdose deaths have been reported in 2022. An average of over 70,000 overdose deaths occur in the US annually.  

If you know someone, or have someone in your family who uses opioids such as fentanyl it is important to recognize the signs and symptoms to look for in an overdose patient. 

Signs of overdosing may include:

  • Slowed or shallow breathing
  • Choking, gurgling noises
  • Body going limp
  • Cold, clammy skin
  • Skin and fingernails turning blue
  • Losing consciousness
  • Lack of responsiveness
  • Constricted pupils (pinpoints)

If you have access to a pharmacy or a healthcare professional, Naloxone (brand names Narcan or Evzio), can be to treat an opioid overdose. Naloxone quickly reverses the effects opioids have on the body.

Drug Abuse Demographics

Overall, the male population has a higher tendency to abuse drugs, compared to females, where 22% males reported abusing substances, and 17% females. Drug use is highest among persons between the ages of 18-25 at 39% compared to persons aged 26-29, at 34%.

A staggering 47% of young people use an illegal drug by the time they graduate from high school. And studies have shown that 70% of users who try an illegal drug before age 13 develop a substance abuse disorder within the next 7 years compared to 27% of those who try an illegal drug after age 17.

Treatment for Substance Use and Addiction

The recent trend of providing treatment rather than punishment for substance use and abuse is encouraging. Even so, the stigma attached to substance use leads to higher numbers of Hispanic and Black populations not seeking treatment. White adults are more likely to request treatment for themselves or their family members. 


Deaths in Treatment

In 2021 and 2022, the ratio of fatalities per total number of patients treated fell drastically to 1.3%. This comes after a year in which the percentage of fatalities during treatment increased by the greatest margin ever recorded, from 1.1% to 1.4%.

The number of people who have died while receiving treatment has climbed by more than a factor of five in recent years, rising from 711 in 2005–2006 to 3,742 in 2022. Although this is the highest known number of fatalities among individuals seeking treatment, the proportion of those murdered while receiving treatment is lower than ever.

Don’t Be Among the Statistics

Prescription drug abuse is a major issue in today’s culture, second only to marijuana. This is particularly a concern since many individuals addicted to opioids later switch to heroin, where they risk exposure to harmful narcotics like fentanyl. In the next few years, prescription opioid addiction will be a major public health problem.

Addicts confront several hazards, including falls and overdoses. While attempting to get drugs, users of illegal substances are more susceptible to violence. At California Prime Recovery, we establish a caring environment to assist individuals in learning to live successful lives without using drugs or alcohol. Contact us today at 866-208-2390 and embark on your journey to recovery. Also, check out our blogs posted weekly on Medium.


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