Heroin | XLDrugRehabBlog.com

Heroin Abuse on the Rise in America

Posted on 07. Apr, 2015 by in Alcohol & Drug Abuse

While there are many statistics evidencing downturns in drug abuse trends in the U.S., there remains at least one glaring contrast throughout the past decade: heroin. Even as other common hard drugs have dipped in popularity, heroin abuse has climbed, raising questions about the surge in interest. What causes new users to flock to such a dangerous substance? There are several key factors which must be examined.

Drug Accessibility

Supply is a critical element in recreational drug use. When product is plentiful in a certain area, it often has the dual effect of lower prices and increased exposure to the public. Particularly in the absence of other more affordable options, drugs like heroin can become extremely popular in a short amount of time.

The U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration published findings that showed a nearly 60 percent increase in first-time heroin users when compared to a decade earlier. The study suggested that as of 2012, there were approximately 156,000 people who had used heroin for the first time in the 12 months previous. This is compared with 90,000 in the same time frame in 2012.

Filling Market Voids

As abuse of cocaine and methamphetamine has declined, heroin has continued on the upward path. There is some discussion that its boost in popularity may coincide with a reduction in the availability of prescription painkillers. Drugs such as oxycodone have even been reformulated with the express intent of discouraging abuse, furthering demand for a viable replacement. When coupled with a stark difference in street prices—heroin is five to ten times cheaper on average versus oxycodone—it is plain to see how interest could be sparked quite easily.


Heroin has been identified as one of the most critical drug abuse issues facing many regions in America. It has impacted urban communities and is growing more popular in rural and suburban areas, most frequently with adults between 18 and 25. There has also been a fairly significant rise in admissions for those seeking treatment for heroin addiction. However, the drug’s effects remain destructive to individuals and communities alike, and therefore it must be combated.


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