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Wyoming Drug Addiction


Wyoming drug addiction follows many of the national trends, with meth being a top priority in 2013. According to the Wyoming Department of Health, Wyoming drug addiction for adults 26 and older was exactly even with the national average of 3.5 percent in self-reported surveys. Second on the list are opiates and synthetics. Cocaine barely shows up in the data for drug abuse statistics. In the 2014 State Epidemiological Profile, the Department of Health attributed most of the illicit drug abuse to psychotropics (which would include meth) and analgesics (which includes heroin). These two categories of illicit drugs were even in the number of accidental overdoses, both fatal and non-fatal, that added up to 20 per 10,000 hospital discharges each. In comparison, other sedatives only had 5 per 10,000 accidental overdoses on record. However, when it came to rehab admittances, meth had more than twice the rate as opiates, with meth rehab admittance rates being 9.8 percent in comparison to 4.6 percent for opiates.


Highest Rates of Wyoming Drug Abuse

In a separate Wyoming Epidemiological Community Profile report, the Wyoming Department of Health tracked illicit drug use rates in different counties by looking at drug abuse violation arrests. The three counties with the highest rates were: Converse, Hot Springs, and Campbell counties. While this can give some idea of what areas are in trouble in Wyoming, it doesn’t offer a view on which specific illicit drug is involved in the arrest. However, meth and heroin have very different impacts on social and individual health and require different treatment options. Cocaine, also not listed separately, will require its own type of treatment and rehab options.


Meth Addiction in Wyoming

As a psychotropic, meth has intense effects on the mental and physical health of an addict. It is one drug that can hook you on the first try. The way the drug works on the brain is to diffuse directly through neural membranes to get a rush of dopamine released and to keep it from being withdrawn. The drug is a stimulant that makes people feel alive and overly confident. Users will neglect eating habits, their personal hygiene, and their families to get another hit of meth. The drug is so potent that it will stay in the blood for at least 90 days, and has been known to cause psychotic breaks even that long afterwards. Many users experience hallucinations too, including a specific hallucination that there are bugs crawling under their skin. This is why meth users typically have scabs all over their body from picking at these imaginary insects under the skin. A person’s appearance changes dramatically with the use of meth, not just in skin health. Dental health is also impacted and accelerated tooth decay can cause a condition known as “meth mouth” where the person loses many of their teeth. Withdrawal symptoms are severe and include mood swings, intense cravings, more hallucinations and psychotic breaks. It’s typically necessary for an addict to require medical detox with methadone to get off of meth safely. Anti-psychotics will also be required in the event the person goes into a psychotic breakdown.


Heroin: Another Powerful Factor in Wyoming Drug Addiction

Heroin is in a class of drugs called opiates. It derives from the same compounds as morphine, made from the Asian opium poppy. Morphine is primarily used to treat pain before, during, or after surgery, but it is also highly addictive. However, heroin is a Schedule I drug with no medical use whatsoever. It does, however, produce a euphoric high that is what makes it popular. However, it has the same pain-numbing effect as morphine. Like morphine, it also depresses the respiratory system, making it a dangerous drug that can easily lead to a coma or death. Even if a person manages to survive an accidental overdose, the lack of oxygen to the brain can cause brain damage. Heroin has numerous withdrawal symptoms that make it tough to quit the habit. Addicts will vomit, experience pain, and can kick compulsively. Intense cravings for the drug increase and a sense of desperation sets in that can drive an addict to do things they normally wouldn’t do to get enough money for another hit, like criminal activity. Naloxone can help people who may be having accidental overdoses due to heroin addiction, as it reverses the effects of the drug, but the addict will still need to undergo rehab to get to the root of their addiction.


Cocaine: A Dangerous Stimulant to the Heart

Cocaine addicts can suffer strokes and heart attacks when on the drug. During withdrawal, the same addict can end up in a severe depression and even become suicidal. Yet, intense cravings will also lead the user back to using. The drug is so notorious that it is known to cause risky behavior in users, like having unprotected sex with multiple partners. This can lead to exposure to HIV or other STDs. There is no medical detox for cocaine, but it’s important to get supervision when detoxing so that antidepressants can be administered, if needed.


Rehab Options for Wyoming Drug Addiction

Once a person gets off drugs, they still need to undergo rehab where they will undergo peer and group counseling, as well as individual counseling. They will gain many valuable skills, using cognitive behavioral therapy, to help them run the gauntlet of temptation they face after they have gotten clean. They may be on methadone or another medical detox for a while as they clear their systems of all drugs. Rehab is either inpatient or outpatient formats. Programs run for 30, 60, or 90 days.


Getting clean from drugs is no easy task. It requires the help of medical professionals. The rewards, though, are worth the struggle. It can bring someone back from the brink of death. It helps clean up neighborhoods and heal families. If you or someone you love is a victim of Wyoming drug addiction, don’t delay. Get help as soon as possible to help you recover your health and your life before it is too late. Contact an addiction specialist today.