Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Most Commonly Abused Drugs in Colorado

Compared to the national average, the rate of alcohol and drug use in the United States is exceptionally high. Colorado is also an equal-opportunity consumer of drugs and alcohol. While certain substances tend to be more or less common in various states, people in Colorado abuse different classes of drugs almost equally.

Most Commonly Abused Drugs, Colorado, drugs, health
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People with substance use disorder or addiction can benefit from drug rehab Denver. However, the treatment strategy may depend somewhat upon the substance involved. Here are some of the most commonly abused drugs in Colorado.


Along with Washington, Colorado was one of the first states to legalize recreational marijuana in 2012, so it is perhaps not surprising that marijuana use is so prevalent there. Colorado's rate of monthly marijuana use ranks second in the nation and involves at least half a million Coloradans.


Methamphetamine is an extremely dangerous stimulant drug. Prolonged use can produce marked physical and psychological changes. With the exception of marijuana, methamphetamine is responsible for more primary treatment admissions than any other drug in Colorado. It is the third most-abused substance in the state.


Heroin is an illegal opioid with a high abuse potential and no accepted medical use. However, many opioids are prescription painkillers available on a limited basis to people with a legitimate medical reason for taking them. Many people who become addicted to opioids first started taking them because they were prescribed by a physician. When substance use results in a person's death, opioids are a likely cause.


Like methamphetamine, cocaine is a stimulant drug with similar effects. Like opioids, it is likely to be the cause of death in a drug overdose. Cocaine abuse is still common in Colorado despite a decline in use over the last decade or so.


Despite the prevalence of illicit drugs, the most abused substance in Colorado is still alcohol. The fact that alcohol is legal for adults to obtain and consume, and often fairly easy for underage teens to do so as well, may account for this. Approximately 353,000 people 12 years old and over in Colorado, about 8.4%, reported alcohol abuse in a study conducted between 2009 and 2013. Among those legally able to drink, 7.4% reported heavy drinking within the preceding year. This percentage represents about 268,000 Colorado residents and is higher than the national average of 6.8% during the same time frame.

People who enter treatment for substance use in Colorado are more likely to have a problem with both alcohol and drugs compared to those treated for drugs alone or alcohol alone.

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