Americans Spent Nearly $150 Billion on Illegal Drugs in 2016, Study Says

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100 dollar bills with multiple kinds of pills scattered on top

According to a recent RAND Corporation study, Americans spent nearly $150 billion on illegal drugs and narcotics of all types in 2016. It is believed a similar amount of money was also spent each year from 2015, back to 2006, where the data pool ended.

Researchers did not have clear receipts or financial records of illicit drug purchases, of course. Much of the study depended on calculated estimates by surveying how often the average American used illegal drugs and the average known cost for those drugs each year.

Research Reveals Trends in Illegal Drug Use

The study found that marijuana had become the largest money drain for people with drug addiction and recreational habits alike. 10 years ago, though, marijuana was lowest priced of the narcotics tracked by the researchers. It is worth noting that the widespread legalization of recreational marijuana in many states likely reduced the amount of illegal spending on marijuana. Yet, the drug still took the study’s top spending spot.

It was also determined that more than 3 million Americans used meth at least once a week in 2016. The number was closer to 2 million in 2006, suggesting the trend is increasing today.

$43 billion of the $146 billion total was spent on heroin, just behind $44 billion spent on meth. However, approximately one million less people were recorded as “chronic heroin users” than there were “chronic meth users.” This suggests that heroin is either much more expensive per gram or that an individual uses it much more frequently.

(You can learn more about the RAND Corporation study and its findings by clicking here to view a full article from U.S. News & World Report or go to addiction news.)

Save Yourself & Your Finances from the Grips of Addiction

At Dana Point Rehab Campus in Orange County, our goal is to help everyone understand that they do have the strength and focus required to defeat drug addiction. Not only do you deserve to feel healthier and happier, but you also deserve to find financial stability by cutting your spending on addictive substances. With recovery from addiction, you can improve all facets of your life, rediscover what truly makes you happy, and find inner peace.

Take the first step in overcoming drug or alcohol addiction. Call 888-509-1560 today.

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