Masters of Health Magazine July 2020 - Page 53

“Drug use is on the rise in this country and 23.5 million Americans are addicted to alcohol and drugs. That’s approximately one in every 10 Americans over the age of 12 – roughly equal to the entire population of Texas. But only 11 percent of those with an addiction receive treatment. It is staggering and unacceptable that so many Americans are living with an untreated chronic disease and cannot access treatment,” said Dr. Kima Joy Taylor, director of the Closing the Addiction Treatment Gap (CATG) Initiative.

• According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), 19.7 million American adults (aged 12 and older) battled a substance use disorder in 2017.1

• Almost 74% of adults suffering from a substance use disorder in 2017 struggled with an alcohol use disorder.

• About 38% of adults in 2017 battled an illicit drug use disorder.1

• That same year, 1 out of every 8 adults struggled with both alcohol and drug use disorders simultaneously.

• In 2017, 8.5 million American adults suffered from both a mental health disorder and a substance use disorder, or co-occurring disorders.

• Drug abuse and addiction cost American society more than $740 billion annually in lost workplace productivity, healthcare expenses, and crime-related costs.

• Genetics, including the impact of one’s environment on gene expression, account for about 40% to 60% of a person’s risk of addiction.

• Environmental factors that may increase a person’s risk of addiction include a chaotic home environment and abuse, parent’s drug use and attitude toward drugs, peer influences, community attitudes toward drugs, and poor academic achievement.

Teenagers and people with mental health disorders are more at risk for drug use and addiction than other populations.

In 1956, the American Medical Association (AMA) declared alcoholism an illness, and in 1987, the AMA and other medical organizations officially termed addiction a disease.

The term addiction does not only refer to dependence on substances such as heroin or cocaine. A person who cannot stop taking a particular drug or chemical has a substance dependence.

Some addictions also involve an inability to stop partaking in activities, such as gambling, eating, or working. In these circumstances, a person has a behavioral addiction.

In 1956, the American Medical Association (AMA) declared alcoholism an illness, and in 1987, the AMA and other medical organizations officially termed addiction a disease.

The term addiction does not only refer to dependence on substances such as heroin or cocaine. A person who cannot stop taking a particular drug or chemical has a substance dependence.

Some addictions also involve an inability to stop partaking in activities, such as gambling, eating, or working. In these circumstances, a person has a behavioral addiction.

Addiction is a chronic disease that can also result from taking medications. The overuse of prescribed opioid painkillers, for example, causes 115 deaths every day in the United States.

When a person experiences addiction, they cannot control how they use a substance or partake in an activity, and they become dependent on it to cope with daily life.

Every year, addiction to alcohol, tobacco, illicit drugs, and prescription opioids costs the U.S. economy upward of $740 billion in treatment costs, lost work, and the effects of crime.

Most people start using a drug or first engage in an activity voluntarily. However, addiction can take over and reduce self-control. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/323465