Drug addiction has reached epidemic levels across the globe withapproximately 247 million drug users worldwide.1 In America, the problem is no better as over 10 percent of individuals 12 years of age and over have used an illicit drug in the past month in the United States.2 As a matter of fact, nearly 21 million Americans ages 12 and older had a substance use problem in 2015.3

United States use two-thirds of illegal drugs worldwideExcluding alcohol and tobacco, the top ten drugs used across the world were: cannabis, MDMA, cocaine, amphetamines, LSD, magic mushrooms, prescribed & non-prescribed opioid medication, nitrous oxide, ketamine and poppers.4

Nothing is off limits with 10 percent of drug users globally having purchased drugs online via the dark net. 5 percent of respondents said they did not consume drugs before accessing them through dark-net markets.5

Overdose deaths involving prescription opioids have quadrupled since 1999, and so have sales of these prescription drugs. From 1999 to 2015, more than 183,000 people have died in the U.S. from overdoses related to prescription opioids.6 Patterns such as this suggest that drug abuse in America is steadily and significantly on the rise.


Since its discovery thousands of years ago, marijuana use has steadily risen to the levels it is at now. Marijuana is the most commonly used illicit drug with over 22.2 million people having used the drug in the past month according to the 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health.7

Synthetic Drugs

Synthetic marijuana is now a major role player too, being second in line to naturally grown cannabis among high school seniors.8 Other synthetic drugs, such as bath salts, have grown quickly in popularity since first entering the European drug market in 2008 and making their way to the US a year or so later.


Cocaine is far more popular in foreign countries like Scotland and Brazil, but the drug still was used by over 5 percent of all individuals in the US between the ages of 18 and 25 in the past year. In addition, over 16 percent of people 26 and over in the United States have used cocaine in their lifetime.9


Heroin is still most widely used in countries like Afghanistan where the substance is harvested from opium poppy pods grown there. In recent years, growing popularity for the drug in the mid-Atlantic region of the United States led to Baltimore, Maryland, being dubbed the heroin capital of America.10 Heroin and other opioids were to blame for approximately 1.3 million emergency room visits in 2014 according to a government report. The 2014 numbers reflect a 64 percent increase for inpatient care and a 99 percent jump for emergency room treatment compared to figures from 2005. 11

Prescription Drugs

Prescription painkillers are one of the most commonly abused substances with between 26.4 million and 36 million people abuse opioids worldwide. An estimated 2.1 million people in the United States suffering from substance use disorders related to prescription opioid pain relievers. The United States accounts for almost 100 percent of the world total for the drug hydrocodone (Vicodin) and 81 percent for the oxycodone (Percocet).12 Abuse of these drugs has become increasingly common among suburbanites, likely due to their availability.

Hallucinogens and Stimulants

LSD is growing in popularity among young adults with close to 7 percent of 12th graders using LSD in their lifetime. Over 4 percent of 12th graders have used LSD in the past year.13 Inhalants are far easier to come across. This may explain why national surveys indicate that nearly 21.7 million Americans aged 12 and older have used inhalants at least once in their lives.14


Drinking too much alcohol can lead to both short-term and long-term health problems. Alcohol is also one of the major reasons for premature death. One in 10 deaths among working-age adults aged 20–64 years are due to excessive alcohol use.15 Excessive alcohol consumption is responsible for an average of 88,000 deaths each year.16

Here are some more facts to consider regarding the use of alcohol:

  • By age 15, about 33 percent of teens have had at least 1 drink.17
  • By age 18, about 60 percent of teens have had at least 1 drink.17
  • In 2015, 7.7 million young people ages 12–20 reported that they drank alcohol beyond “just a few sips” in the past month17
  • Alcohol use contributed to more than 200 diseases and injury-related health conditions, most notably DSM–IV alcohol dependence, liver cirrhosis, various forms of cancer, and injuries.17

About 1.3 million adults received treatment for AUD at a specialized facility in 2015.18

Nicotine and Alcohol 2010 statistics

Drug Addiction Treatment

All of these statistics and facts represent the choices of millions of people. There is no doubt that drug addiction is a very serious problem. But you personally can make the right choice right now. Whether you want help for yourself or your loved one, it’s time to reach out for professional help. At Michael’s House, our treatment facility is located in beautiful Palm Springs, California. Our facility is the breath of fresh air you’ve been looking for. We are a full-service program that provides interventions, detox, mental health care and addiction treatment. We truly care and will do all we can to help you leave treatment fully equipped to manage your health moving forward. If you or your loved one is addicted to drugs, please call today.

1 World Drug Report 2016. Rep. United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, May 2016. Web. 2 August 2017.

2National Center for Health Statistics.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 03 May 2017. Web. 2 August 2017.

3 Miller, Sara G. “Drug Use in America: What the Numbers Say.” LiveScience. Purch, 08 Sept. 2016. Web. 2 August 2017.

4Global Drug Survey.” The Global Drug Survey 2016 findings | Global Drug Survey. N.p., n.d. Web. 02 2 August 2017.

5 Ibid.

6Prescription Opioid Overdose Data.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 16 Dec. 2016. Web. 2 August 2017.

7Results from the 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health:Detailed Tables.” Results from the 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health: Detailed Tables, SAMHSA, CBHSQ. N.p., n.d. Web. 2 August 2017.

8 Drug Facts: Spice (“Synthetic Marijuana”).” (n.d.). National Institute on Drug Abuse. Accessed 2 August 2017.

9National Survey of Drug Use and Health.” National Institute on Drug Abuse. N.p., n.d. Web. 2 August 2017.

10 Yang, C. (2014). “Part I: Baltimore Is the U.S. Heroin Capital.” ABC News. 2 August 2017.

11 Weiss, Audrey. Patient Characteristics of Opioid-Related Inpatient Stays and Emergency Department Visits Nationally and by State, 2014. Rep. Agency For Healthcare Research And Quality, June 2017. Web. 2 August 2017.

12America’s Addiction to Opioids: Heroin and Prescription Drug Abuse.” National Institute on Drug Abuse. N.p., 14 May 2014. Web. 2 August 2017.

13Hallucinogens.” National Institute on Drug Abuse. N.p., 01 May 2014. Web. 2 August 2017.

14Inhalants.” National Institute on Drug Abuse. N.p., n.d. Web. 2 August 2017.

15Alcohol Deaths.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 30 June 2014. Web. 2 August 2017.

16Excessive alcohol use continues to be drain on American economy.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, n.d. Web. 2 August 2017.

17Underage Drinking.National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, n.d. Web. 2 August 2017.

18 Global Status Report on Alcohol and Health. World Health Organization (WHO). 2014 ed. 2 August 2017.

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