Drug, substance abuse and addiction statistics 2024

Published March 28th 2024 in USA Today

"Drug and substance abuse continues to be a major problem across the United States, with 1 in 4 Americans over the age of 12 admitting that they used illicit drugs in 2022.1 While alcohol, tobacco and marijuana represent the most popular drugs among Americans, many struggle with more illicit drugs, including cocaine, methamphetamines and heroin, according to the most recent Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) survey."

The article in USA today compiles statistics on substance abuse in the United States with insights into the population segments that use drugs, the most popular illicit drugs being used, self reported statistics of drug use by state, and how many people die from drug use.

Key Points in the Statistics

  1. 25% of Americans (70 million people) admitted they use illicit drugs, according to the most recent National Survey on Drug Use.
  2. 48.7 million people nationwide struggle with substance abuse according to the same survey.
  3. Alcohol is the most commonly used drug, followed by tobacco and marijuana.
  4. Health insurance policies sold on the Affordable Care Act (ACA) Marketplace or provided by Medicaid are required to cover substance abuse.
  5. Nationwide, 38,679,000 American adults reported having a substance abuse disorder in the last statistically available year.5
  6. Montana has the highest self-reported rate (19.2% of adults) of substance abuse. OregonWashingtonSouth Dakota and Kansas round out the top five.
  7. Georgia is the state with the lowest rate of self-reported substance abuse (11.31% of adults).

From the Article

"Substance abuse disorders represent a dangerous health condition — one that deserves the proper care and treatment. Yet 93.5% of Americans with a self-reported substance abuse problem do not seek help.

If you or someone you love is suffering from substance abuse, know that there are options available. Many health insurance plans include coverage for mental health and substance abuse. If you purchase health insurance from the ACA Marketplace, the insurer is required to cover substance abuse counseling and treatment.Medicare will also pay for treatment of alcoholism and substance use disorders, though its coverage is not as extensive as it is for other services."

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