Up to 75,000 Americans at Risk of Death from Substance Abuse and Suicide Due to Coronavirus - Dana Point Rehab Campus
Drug and Alcohol Rehab in Orange County

Up to 75,000 Americans at Risk of Death from Substance Abuse and Suicide Due to Coronavirus

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought about a countless number of new and unusual circumstances that are difficult for many to embrace as the “new normal.” Loss of employment, social distancing, stay-at-home orders, face masks, and the COVID-19 virus itself are all potential anxiety triggers that can easily lead to problems with substance abuse in those who are trying their best to cope with the pandemic. A recent report from an independent public charity called Well Being Trust predicts that COVID-19 could result in the death of an extra 75,000 Americans due to pandemic-related substance abuse and suicide.

Drug rehab centers around the U.S. have stepped up to support those at risk for substance abuse during these hard times, and are reminding people that help is still available.

Here’s a look at trends in drug and alcohol addiction since the COVID-19 pandemic began, and what you can do next if you or a loved one needs help fighting substance abuse.

Drug Use Trends During COVID-19

Many countries around the world have reported a shortage of illicit street drugs since the COVID-19 pandemic began, which has led to increases in drug prices and reductions in drug purity levels, according to a new report from the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). As a result, some drug users have been switching to more accessible but deadlier substances, such as from heroin to synthetic fentanyl.

The UNODC is saying that drug traffickers may be stockpiling drugs due to COVID-19 border restrictions and lockdowns, which may eventually lead to an increase in the availability of low-cost, high-purity drugs and deadly overdoses when these measures are no longer in place. The UNODC is also saying that shortages in drug supplies are increasing rates of needle sharing among intravenous drug users — which may in turn trigger a higher number of HIV, hepatitis C, and COVID-19 cases.

Though rates of drug use in the U.S. and around the world have decreased since the beginning of the pandemic, these rates may soon go up as states and countries start lifting lockdown and travel restrictions. When they do, drug rehab centers will be prepared to help those who are struggling to get back on their feet and become sober.

Alcohol Use Trends During COVID-19

A recent report from the University of Southern California says alcohol sales in the U.S. increased by 55% during the second half of March compared with sales during the same period in 2019. Alcohol use has increased on behalf of several pandemic-related factors, including depression, anxiety, stress, boredom, fear, social isolation, and more time at home. Some people are drinking to have fun and pass the time while in quarantine and lockdown, while many others are drinking to cope with and relieve negative feelings, reports the Annals of Internal Medicine.

How to Get Addiction Help During COVID-19

Though drugs and alcohol may seem like effective ways to cope with stress and anxiety related to COVID-19, the truth is that these substances may increase one’s susceptibility to the virus by weakening and suppressing the immune system. Additionally, drugs and alcohol are only a temporary solution to the COVID-19 pandemic, and will likely worsen any problems related to finances and unemployment.

If you think you may have a problem with substance abuse, your next best step is to contact a drug rehab center. Many hospitals and clinics across the U.S. are restricting their healthcare services only to people with COVID-19 symptoms, and may not have available beds or the capacity needed to treat problems related to substance use disorders. However, drug rehab centers offer detox and inpatient residential rehab programs that can help you safely withdraw from drugs and alcohol, and will work with you to find alternate ways to manage and reduce stress.

Dana Point Rehab Campus is in full operation during the COVID-19 pandemic to serve people in need of detox and drug rehab treatment. Contact us today at 949-347-5466 for more information.

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