Minnesota is known as the land of the 10,000 lakes. It is not the smallest state in the country, nor is it the least populous. However, some 61% of the population live in the Twin Cities area, leaving the rest of the area as a perfect destination for people who enjoy the great outdoors. It is a very healthy state, as well as being highly literate and it has a reasonably diverse economy, including tourism, transportation and the arts. The state is also becoming increasingly diverse. Despite all these positives, Minnesota is far from perfect and the number of Minnesota drug rehab clinics demonstrates that there is a significant drug abuse problem. In order to understand the particular challenges a Minnesota drug rehab clinic has to deal with, it is important to look at the statistics of drug abuse in the state. It is also important to understand the different drugs and their effects, so as to best tailor a recovery plan for addicts.
Minnesota Drug Statistics
Statistics give a global picture of the situation in the state. Minnesota drug rehab facilities, law enforcement and the medical community work together in order to provide these statistics. They show us that some 115,000 Minnesotans live under the influence of some sort of drugs. Frighteningly, some 20% of these are aged between 12 and 17. The most abused drugs in the state of Minnesota are marijuana, cocaine (powder and crack), hallucinogens, heroin, prescription drugs, meth and alcohol. Let’s take a look at some of these substances.
Minnesota Drug Rehab Clinics and Crystal Meth
Crystal math is becoming more and more popular in the state. Minnesota drug rehab facilities warn that one of the big dangers with meth is that a single hit can be sufficient to render someone addicted. It is easy to get and is far more popular then cocaine, in part due to its lower price. The drug trade is controlled mainly by the Mexican drug cartels, with some 80% of the drugs coming from there. This also presents a significant issue for law enforcement, who report some 26% of all arrests were relating to meth, and a further 47% were related to cocaine. Methamphetamine is mainly used by Caucasian males. These present the biggest number of patients at Minnesota drug rehab centers. Statistics also show that despite significant efforts by law enforcement, crime rates due to meth are still on the rise. The price of crystal meth is in decline, which allows for larger numbers of people to access the drug.
The vast majority of all drugs trafficked into Minnesota come from Mexico and California. However, there are also more and more street gangs in the state and these are responsible for the availability throughout all areas. Minnesota drug rehab facilities have seen that small time gangs are working together with international cartels to traffic drugs into the state. There are also increasing numbers of meth labs, producing the substance in house. Meth labs have been found in farms, but also in homes and even motels.
Minnesota Drug Rehab Facilities and Young People
A problem of growing concern in Minnesota is the number of young people who abuse substances. In most states, young people seem to abuse marijuana, which is no different in Minnesota. However, drug rehab facilities are also noticing young people are using cocaine, heroin and meth. Prescription drugs are also becoming increasingly popular among young people. There are numerous MDMA labs, which is increasing the popularity of club drugs.
Minnesota Drug Rehab Facilities and Alcoholism
Another problem that is on the rise in Minnesota is alcohol dependency. Both younger generations and adults are turning to alcohol in increasing numbers. The problems this causes are far stretching. It increases the cost of maintaining law enforcement due to the number of alcohol fueled crimes, but it also makes productivity at work lower and this is of particular concern. Short term absenteeism is on the rise throughout Minnesota industries, as are the number of driver under influence arrests. Many of these DUIs have led to deaths and they generally involve young people. There is also a significant impact on the health care provision in the state, particularly in relation to female alcohol dependents, which is leading to higher numbers of children being born with fetal alcohol syndrome. Another issue that is reported by Minnesota drug rehab clinics is that HIV/AIDS is on the rise among the female population of the state, mainly due to not using clean needles.
Minnesota Drugs and the Ongoing Projects
There are now increasing numbers of courts throughout the state that focus specifically on drug offenses. They are now also dealing with alcohol abuse offenses. The Minnesota Police Department works together with the courts, health services and rehab centers not just to provide help for addicts, but also to reduce the availability of drugs in the state. However, more often than not, they seem to be fighting a losing battle.
Similarly, the Department of Health is also heavily involved in improving the situation. They have recently started the Meth Lab Program, which raises awareness about the drug, but also shares resources between anti-drug charities and organizations and people who are abusing or are at risk of abusing meth. One part of the program is to provide specific training to first responders and staff who are at risk of coming into contact with meth addicts. The Department of Health is also campaigning to make it harder to buy the household products use to create meth. At present, those under 18 are not allowed to buy the necessary products to make meth and sellers must be licensed pharmacists.
The biggest focus for drug rehab clinics, however, is to work with the individuals affected by drugs. They support them through a detox program and then offer them intensive counseling. Rather than fighting the availability of drugs, drug rehab centers focus on stopping people from being dependent on them. By combining all of these initiatives together, it is hoped the situation in Minnesota will soon improve.