A terrifying truth about addiction is that it can happen to literally anyone. It’s very common among any age group, and casual drinking and drug use are considered the social norm.
Going out drinking, staying home drinking, drinking to relax, all of that is so common. The college student is partying, the wine-mom, the after-work beers to wind down. All of this pushes alcohol as something typical, a way to pass the time.
The NIA (National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism) says an estimated 88,000 people a year die of alcohol abuse alone.
Doing drugs to help perform well in school is common with those who are overwhelmed, doing drugs to help handle day to day life in adulthood, doing drugs for recreational activity and to “let loose.” So many people treat drugs as a necessity or as a fun time, which just leads to abuse.
According to the CDC, more than 72,000 people died in 2017 from drug overdoses.
Addiction is an epidemic, not because it happens to everyone, but because it can happen to anyone. A few drinks a week can turn into a few drinks every night which can escalate into abuse. Taking drugs to help keep focus for work can turn into the inability to function without them. That turns into abuse as well.
Casual abuse is the problem of our society, and that encourages eventual addiction.
The National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) says that 21.5 million American adults (aged 12 and older) battled a substance use disorder in 2014.
Addiction can be hard to fight, force people to feel alone in their struggles. This is what makes rehab both so important and so hard to do. Recovery in the face of constant reminders can feel startling, but it is worth it.