Originally published on Healthversed.com
There can be no doubt that drug addiction is becoming a burgeoning health crisis in the United States. The “drug epidemic” is, of course, nothing new. However, the United States’ thinking about this problem is much different than it used to be.
In the past, when one thought of drug addiction, one thought of someone snorting cocaine or shooting up heroin. While hardcore illicit drugs remain a problem, the simple fact is this: the wanton prescription of opioid painkillers has made the drug problem in America more pervasive and more dangerous than anyone ever thought it could be.
In a recent study, Castlight Health probed the rates of opioid painkiller abuse in United States cities, identifying those municipalities that have the gravest problems. Contrary to what you might think, the cities on this list aren’t what many people would believe to be America’s drug capitols. Instead, they’re places you may never have heard of before.
20. Chattanooga, TN
Located along the Tennessee River, the beautiful city of Chattanooga has a population of just around 175,000. According to the report, roughly 7.7% of Chattanooga’s population has developed an abuse issue with prescription opioids. The figure might be higher if illicit opioids were to be included in the study.
19. Evansville-Henderson, IN-KY
Statistically speaking, Evansville-Henderson comprised the 142nd largest metropolitan population area in the United States, including a number of both Indianan and Kentuckian municipalities. In this area which has a population of about 358,000, 7.8% of the total population has developed an addiction to prescription opioids.
18. Fayetteville, NC
Fayetteville, which is located in the southern portion of North Carolina, is a historic city which is also home to Fort Bragg, an important United States military base. For this city, the problem is marginally worse than with the previous. Around 7.9% of Fayetteville’s population has developed an opioid painkiller abuse problem.