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Heroin abuse continues to rise while other drugs lose favor

In a previous post, we discussed Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin's startling State of the State speech in which he directly addressed the Green Mountain State's growing heroin problem. This information came as a shock to many who often think of Vermont as a tranquil, rural and affluent location. Forbes contributor David DiSalvo recently weighed in on the issue, writing in his column that the drug problem in Vermont is no different from what's going on in similar communities across the nation. 

DiSalvo writes that in suburbs and affluent areas, drugs like cocaine, methamphetamine and prescription medications are losing their popularity. While this might seem like a good thing, statistics from the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) suggest that users of these substances – mostly prescription painkillers – are simply trading in their drug of choice for heroin. According to a 2012 SAMHSA analysis, heroin abuse among first-time users has increased by 60 percent over the past 10 years. 

Why is this happening? DiSalvo acknowledges that the crackdown on prescription drug abuse has pushed many addicts to use heroin, but he also takes the theory a bit further stating that high-income areas like Vermont are lucrative targets for large-scale drug dealing. 

"Vermont's stratospheric heroin increase is happening where the money is," DiSalvo wrote. "And the national drug abuse trends suggest that the same thing is happening across the country."

Do you suspect that your teen may be struggling with a substance abuse problem? Now is the time to seek help. Contact Intervention Services today to learn how a professional interventionist could help your child. 

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