Idaho Drug Addiction
An area called Treasure Valley is the focus of many of Idaho’s law enforcement and drug treatment experts. The region stretches from Boise to the Oregon border to the West and includes Caldwell, Nampa, and Meridian. More than a third of Idaho’s population lives in this valley so it is logical that much of the drug abuse, addiction, and drug-related crimes occur here.
Drug addiction treatment admissions for methamphetamine and marijuana have been increasing steadily in the region, and deaths from benzodiazepines and the opiates methadone and morphine are sharply up. Ada County, where Boise is found, usually has binge drinking rates higher than the statewide average.
Cocaine is widely available throughout the state and perhaps due to falling prices, has seen increasing popularity in recent years. Cocaine use estimates have tripled in the last year or two. The change is thought to result from a reduced methamphetamine supply. Meth users may switch to cocaine when there’s less methamphetamine in circulation as both drugs are stimulants. Unfortunately, meth supplies have not reduced enough to cause Idaho’s problem with meth abuse and addiction to go away.
Methamphetamine is the Curse of Many Western States, Especially Those with Extensive Rural Areas
No one knows exactly why rural residents tend to have higher proportions of methamphetamine addiction than urban areas. Was it because the home production of methamphetamine caused so many toxic fumes that for many years, production mostly took place out in the country? Or were these citizens more prone to methamphetamine abuse that turned into addiction? Or were they simply targeted by drug dealers for unknown reasons? Whatever the cause, the pattern remains that many rural young adults in the West and Central states suffer from methamphetamine addiction in greater numbers than city-dwellers.
In Idaho, meth abuse began to climb after 2003. Despite changes in state laws in many states over the next few years that limited domestic meth production, meth abuse, and addiction numbers didn’t drop but rather increased. This was because Mexican drug trafficking organizations promptly took over the methamphetamine market. Now instead of Idaho’s law enforcement fighting methamphetamine trafficking from small domestic labs, it’s a war fought on interstates and highways, trying to catch the drugs as they enter the state and travel to every corner.
Even as changes in laws tried to reduce meth abuse, the numbers of users and people entering drug treatment showed that this approach was not working. Statistics on meth abusers doubled by 2006 and almost tripled by 2007. In fact, 52 percent of Idaho’s prison inmates are incarcerated due to problems with methamphetamine. Overall, drug arrests nearly tripled between 2003 and 2007. In January 2010 alone, nine people were sentenced to jail for their part in methamphetamine trafficking rings.
Idaho Fights the Problem with a Special Prison
In an effort to curb the growth of substance abuse and drug addiction, Idaho has built a prison dedicated to drug offenders only. This prison, which has not yet been funded or opened, is intended to focus on drug addiction treatment for inmates with the hope of keeping these offenders from returning to drug use and further criminal incarceration after release.
As for treatment for non-inmates, there are a few opiate substitution programs available for addiction treatment for prescription opiates/opioids or heroin in the state but none in Treasure Valley. This fact has both a plus and a minus side. On the plus side, a substitution program at least allows those addicted to prescription painkillers or street opiates to live a crime-free life. But on the minus side, substitution programs do not teach addicts to live completely drug-free lives, which is the message of the Narconon drug and alcohol rehabilitation program.
Idaho Residents Seek Treatment for Illicit Drug Addiction More than Alcoholism
In most states, the biggest numbers of people entering treatment in drug rehabs are for treatment of excessive alcohol consumption. In Idaho, it’s a little different. In 2008, just over a thousand people sought alcohol addiction treatment and 1,282 entered a drug recovery facility for problems with alcohol plus a secondary drug. But the largest number of people entering Idaho rehab centers in 2008 sought help for marijuana addiction (1,834). Sadly, 60 percent of these people were between 12 and 20 years of age. Second place went to those in drug programs for methamphetamine addiction (1,559).
At Narconon drug and alcohol rehabilitation centers across the United States and around the world, those seeking recovery from addiction to alcohol or illicit drugs learn to live fully drug-free lives in these holistic, drugless addiction treatment centers.
The program uses an innovative form of detoxification that employs vitamins, minerals, and a dry-heat sauna to thoroughly detoxify the body of drug residues lodged in fat tissues. Without this step, many addicts are driven back to drug use by the cravings associated with these residues, even when they earnestly wish to live a sober life. After this detoxification step, many of those at the Narconon drug treatment centers state that their cravings are greatly reduced or even eliminated.