Drug And Alcohol Addiction In Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma sits along the I-35 Corridor, a major interstate stretching from the US-Mexico border in Laredo, Texas, to Minnesota. Crosswise, I-40 connects the east and west coasts from North Carolina to California. Consequently, Oklahoma City experiences a high amount of drug-trafficking – typically from drug organizations in the south and west. The result is high rates of illicit substance abuse (particularly Methamphetamines).
A relatively rural state, there are limited treatment options in the immediate Oklahoma City area, but traveling a short distance to neighboring regions might provide the support and assistance needed for those suffering from abuse and addiction.
Oklahoma City’s Trending Drugs of Abuse
Nationwide drug-induced deaths dropped by 4.1% from the previous year to 67,367 in 2018, the vast majority of that number in the state of Oklahoma (70%) were in some way related to Opioids.
However, Oklahomans are more concerned with the continuing rise in Meth addiction and abuse; in November of 2021, nearly 150 pounds of Methamphetamine had been confiscated throughout the state. In 2017, Meth was found as a contributing cause of death in 330 overdoses, a 136% increase from 2012.
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Alcoholism In Oklahoma City
While Meth contributes to more deaths, alcohol abuse is more widespread in Oklahoma City. In fact, 77% of Oklahomans with a drug or alcohol addiction can be qualified as having an alcohol use disorder (about 251,000 people). Compared with other states, Oklahoma ranks 6th in alcohol-related deaths and 3rd in underage drinking. In 2014, alcohol-related arrests outpaced every other type of crime (including murder, rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, larceny, vehicle theft, and drug-related crimes). Unfortunately, only 7.6% of residents receive alcohol addiction treatment.
Oklahoma City’s surrounding population of Native Americans also suffer particularly high rates of alcoholism. Of 111 alcohol poisoning fatalities, 20 were Native Americans – double the rate for other Oklahomans.
The things that this population has been through have left a number of people feeling a loss of their identity, which leads to … depression, suicide, violence against women, alcohol abuse and diabetes. So, replicating culture into the services that we offer has become a high priority for us so we can help these people identify with their culture, with their tribe, and with their values.
One of Oklahoma’s biggest tribes, the Chickasaw Nation, provides substance abuse treatment in the form of residential drug and alcohol rehab.
Oklahoma City Addiction Statistics
86% of homicide offenders in Oklahoma were drinking at the time of their offense.
In 2013, alcohol contributed to 633 teen pregnancies in Oklahoma.
Addiction costs the state of Oklahoma $1 billion in excess of its annual budget, topping $7.2 billion.
Addiction Treatment In Oklahoma City
In addition to drug courts, Oklahoma City offers its residents a few options when it comes to recovery. However, high waitlists have prevented some from getting help when they need it. The Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services maintains 3 state residential rehab facilities and contracts with over 130 treatment facilities.
Treatment services are located throughout the state and are designed to provide:
- Referral to treatment
- Detox services
- Outpatient counseling
- Residential treatment
- Substance abuse education
- Transitional living
- Aftercare Services
Traveling For Rehab
For those in need of more immediate treatment, or for those who want more options when it comes to care, traveling out of state may be the best choice. Traveling for rehab removes the individual from hometown stressors or triggers of addiction. Also, it allows them to focus on their health and recovery.
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Destiny Bezrutczyk is a Digital Content Writer from west Iowa. She earned a Bachelor’s in English Language and Literature from Texas Tech University. After working as a freelance script and blog writer, she began writing content for tech startups. Maintaining a passion for words, she took on a variety of projects where her writing could help people (especially those battling mental health and substance use disorders).
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- News OK. (2012). State of Addiction: Oklahoma ranked No. 1 state in prescription painkiller abuse. Retrieved on August 9, 2018 at https://newsok.com/article/3656694/state-of-addiction-oklahoma-ranked-no-1-state-in-prescription-painkiller-abuse
- News OK. (2015). Oklahoma ranks No. 11 in alcohol poisoning deaths. Retrieved on August 10, 2018 at https://newsok.com/article/5382208/oklahoma-ranks-no-11-in-alcohol-poisoning-deaths
- News OK. (2017). Oklahoma deaths from opioid, meth and heroin increase. Retrieved on August 9, 2018 at https://newsok.com/article/5558012/oklahoma-deaths-from-opioid-meth-and-heroin-increase
- Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services. (2016). Alcohol: Its Impact on Our State. Retrieved on August 10, 2018 at https://ok.gov/odmhsas/documents/Tulsa%20Alcohol%20Summit-TW%202016.pdf
- Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services. (2017). Substance Abuse. Retrieved on August 9, 2018 at https://ok.gov/odmhsas/Substance_Abuse/index.html
- The New York Times. (2019). A New Drug Scourge: Deaths Involving Meth Are Rising Fast. Retrieved on January 21, 2022 from: https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/17/health/meth-deaths-opioids.html
- National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2020). Oklahoma: Opioid-Involved Deaths and Related Harms. Retrieved on January 21, 2022 from: https://www.drugabuse.gov/drug-topics/opioids/opioid-summaries-by-state/oklahoma-opioid-involved-deaths-related-harms
- News 9. (2021). OBN: Meth Is Still ‘Number One Problem’ For Overdoses In Oklahoma. Retrieved on January 21, 2022 from: https://www.news9.com/story/61a1673ec04c280c05aabdea/obn:-meth-is-still-number-one-problem-for-overdoses-in-oklahoma
- The Frontier. (2018). ‘It’s our No. 1 killer’: Deaths Linked to Meth Have Surged in Oklahoma. Retrieved on January 21, 2022 from: https://www.readfrontier.org/stories/its-our-no-1-killer-deaths-linked-to-meth-have-surged-in-oklahoma/