A new survey carried out by researchers working at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has revealed that the number of United States heroin users has grown by 300.000 over the course of just one decade. The announcement was made earlier this week, on Tuesday (July 7, 2015).
Federal health officials believe that the growth was caused by the overprescribing opioid painkillers, which can cause addiction. When the prescriptions finally stopped and the patients didn’t have anything to feed their addiction with, they began to ‘treat’ themselves with heroin as is this five (5) times cheaper on the street.
Statistically speaking, the survey found that they are 40 times more likely to move on to the dangerous drug.
Tom Frieden, director over at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, gave a statement during a news conference saying that “We are priming people to addiction to heroin with overuse of prescription opiates”.
The researchers looked at roughly 67.000 American citizens and found that between the time frames of 2002 – 2004 and 2011 – 2013, the number of women who use heroin has doubled, while the number of men who use heroin has increased by 50 percent (50%).
An interesting note is that the numbers of heroin users has doubled among European Americans, but African Americans, Hispanics, and other races and ethnicities actually saw a decline in their number of heroin users. However, Frieden stressed that heroin use has spread pretty much across all demographics.
The number of users with the age between 18 and 25 more than doubled this past decade, while the number of users age 26 and older increased by 58 percent (58%).
Heroin addictions also affected households and individuals with an income somewhere between $20.000 and $50.000 much more than it did households and individuals who earned either less or more.
Overall, 3 in 1.000 participants admitted to using heroin in the previous year. Compared to a decade ago when only 2 in 1.000 participants admitted to the same thing, the result is that there are now hounds of new heroin users.
As a direct result of the growing number of addicts, death rates caused by heroin overdose have rapidly gone up as well. Just between the years of 2010 and 2013 the number of deaths caused by heroin overdose has tripled.
Although heroin is designed to be injected, many of the new users are either snorting it or smoking it. Unfortunately this is even more dangerous unless the product is unusually pure, but that’s pretty much never the case.
Image Source: wbhm.org