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The Most Commonly Abused Drugs In America

From young adults to college students to adults, most people who come to us for treatment abuse the following substances and then become addicted to them. Our observation also shows that most people begin using drugs as a casual experiment, or due to prescriptions for pain, however they find themselves unable to quit, leading to dangerous behaviors and harmful consequences. Others overuse drugs beyond their prescribed amounts, or misuse drugs without prescription. While drug use does not automatically lead to addiction, the unfortunate truth is that many substance abusers do become addicts for life.

Recognizing the most commonly abused drugs can help you be aware of exposure to them for yourself or your loved ones.

1. Alcohol

Alcohol has the highest rate of abuse among all drugs/substances, reporting more than 16 million people abusing or misusing alcohol by binge drinking or heavy drinking. Consumption of alcohol can damage the areas of the brain that are important for problem solving, decision making, memory and learning. Alcohol can also damage other organs such as the liver, kidneys, heart and several others. Alcohol still remains one of the major causes of deaths and DUI cases.

2. Marijuana

Only slightly less than alcohol, marijuana (weed/cannabis/pot/grass) is also one of the highest abused drugs, reporting more than 12 million people using it in some form. Although many states in the USA are legalizing marijuana, there are many risks associated with this substance. One of the risks with marijuana is that it may be laced with other, more addictive substances because there is no regulated way to purchase it in many states.

3. Opioids

Pain relievers and prescription medications are the next most commonly abused category of drugs, reporting over 10 million people using it in some form such as morphine, codeine, oxycodone, vicodin and several others. Many opioids have high addiction rates, as few as ten days or less for someone to get addicted. What makes them even more dangerous is how many lives are lost due to overuse or misuse of opioids. 

4. Hallucinogens

Mind-altering drugs such as LSD, DMT, MDMA, as well as mushrooms carrying psilocybin are the next category of highly abused drugs. Users of hallucinogens, reported at around 7 million people, use it to experience perception-altering states such as euphoria and ecstasy. However, these hallucinogens are also known to create traumatic emotions and other bodily changes such as enhanced heart rate, increased blood pressure, and several others.

5. Depressants

This category includes medications commonly prescribed for anxiety, panic attacks, depression and other mental health conditions. More than 5 million people misuse or abuse these tranquilizers and sedatives such as benzodiazepines and barbiturates which are typically prescribed for improved sleep and as muscle relaxants.

If you suspect that you or your loved ones may be on the verge of addiction to one of these substances, or any substances at all, the earlier you seek treatment, the better your chances for recovery. 

Don’t wait. Get help Now! Text us at 949-749-3026 or Call us at 866-415-6313

Protect Your Child From Substance Abuse: 4 Tips

Most parents avoid talking about drugs and alcohol with their children. Despite their concerns, they shy away from asking questions, not knowing what to say to their children.

Children naturally emulate and learn from their parents. Educating yourself about the dangers of drugs and alcohol helps provide effective talking points when the topic comes up. Sharing your own feelings as well as examples of your own life situations may help your child trust you and your guidance.

Besides talking to your children about the harmful effects of alcohol and drug abuse, here are some tips that can help you protect them.

1. Learn about substances at home that could be abused

Your medicine cabinet at home may be the easiest place your children get access to addictive substances. Keeping your prescription medications and alcohol in locked cabinets may be one easy way to keep your children away from them.

2. Set clear rules and boundaries

Many parents do not know how to set and enforce rules effectively but compassionately. Arbitrary rules can lead to confusion and disrespecting the rules. When creating a rule, make sure your child understands the rules, as well as the punishment they will receive for breaking them.

3. Take active interest in your child’s life

Start out by asking about your child’s day and make it known to them that you’re there to support them physically and mentally. Learn about their friends at school and after school. Attend your child’s extra curricular activities so that they can feel your involvement. All of these provide opportunities to learn more about what is going on in their life.

4. Set a good example

It has been shown in several studies that children learn from their parents. Behave in a way that you would like your children to behave. If you abuse alcohol or drugs at home, they will naturally assume that it is ok for them to do so. Show that you can have fun that does not involve alcohol or drugs.

If you are beginning to suspect that your child may be abusing substances or alcohol, don’t hesitate to seek help. Getting help early may help protect your child from harmful, potentially lifelong dangers of addiction to drugs and alcohol.

Get help Now! Text us at 949-749-3026 or Call us at 866-415-6313

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