How Is Drug Addiction a Public Health Issue?
Drug addiction is a public health issue that destroys the lives of millions of people every day – but how exactly has drug addiction become the public health crisis that it is defined as today? To understand what makes drug addiction a public health concern, it is important to understand the definition and look into how drug addiction became a problem that affects such a large portion of the world’s population.
Definition of a Public Health Issue
A public health issue, or public health crisis, is defined as a trying situation or complex health problem that impacts humans in one or more areas and spreads to affect more of the world. Drug addiction, which is classified as a disease, has directly impacted millions of people who struggle with the condition and indirectly affected even more people, such as an addict’s family members, close friends, co-workers, etc. The disease of drug addiction has become a growing problem over the years, and it has ultimately manifested into the public health issue that it is today because it affects so many people in so many different areas of the world.
Drug Addiction as a Public Health Issue
With drug addiction impacting the lives of so many individuals as well as those who know them, the disease takes a serious toll on the world, economy, and social infrastructure. There are now too many people who suffer from addiction or struggle as a result of a loved one suffering from the condition. This can take people away from their jobs, financial responsibilities, personal obligations, goals, and duties.
Addiction results in high healthcare expenses and tax. According to Shatterproof, 16% of state budgets in America are focused on substance use disorders like drug addiction. Each state is being impacted more and more by the disease of addiction. As a matter of fact, The United States has ended up spending $700 billion each year on costs related to addiction. These costs include emergency treatment, hospital visits, etc.
Even more than this, drug addiction kills. In fact, approximately 72,000 people died from drug overdoses in the United States alone. This can result in the loved ones of addicts having depression, anxiety, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, and/or another type of mental health condition.
Drug addiction also increases the amount of people who are incarcerated each year. Drugs are illegal, but the law is not enough to deter an addict from continuing to use. As a result, addicts continue to get and use drugs but end up arrested and/or imprisoned for drug use, possession, paraphernalia, and other drug-related charges. Addiction is an illness, and yet, it has been treated as a crime, at least in the United States and many other countries.
There are many different ways that can help explain how drug addiction is and became such a public health issue. People from the United States and throughout the world are impacted by addiction in both direct and indirect ways. From hiking up healthcare costs and federal expenses to traumatizing the loved ones of addicts and taking the lives of millions of people, drug addiction has taken a serious toll on today’s society. Despite drug addiction being classified as a public health issue, the matter is still handled as a moral failing or criminal problem. Addicts need treatment more than any penalty. With proper treatment, it is possible for addicts to recover and lead drug-free lives.
If you have an alcohol or drug addiction, the time to get help is now. The Watershed Addiction Treatment Programs offers comprehensive care to target the underlying causes of the condition. Through a medical detox, inpatient treatment, and aftercare programs, you can get off all substances and learn how to maintain a sober lifestyle. It can all start with a simple phone call. Call The Watershed now at 1-800-861-1768.Tags: Addiction, drug addiction, public health issue