Wyoming Addiction Treatment and Info

Drug and substance abuse is a nation-wide issue, and it has been for several decades now. Nearly every state has had to deal with the negative ramifications which result from drug addiction and abuse. However, there are some states that have shown worrying increases in the rates of drug use and abuse, including but not limited to Wyoming.

While the state's drug abuse rates fall below the national average, the truth is that far too many people getting in on the drug use act. It appears that heroin, crack cocaine and methamphetamines are the most prevalently abused drugs here.

Addiction in Wyoming

The majestic Rocky Mountains and the Yellowstone National Park both have their home in beautiful Wyoming. This diverse landscape has provided inspiration to many a people and there are recreational activities galore for residents and visitors alike.

While the rates of substance abuse in Wyoming are not as high as they are in other states, way too many Wyoming families deal with the anguish of addiction every day. In addition to aiding addicted persons get re-accustomed to living a life rooted in sobriety, the treatment programs in Wyoming also help in the rebuilding of relationships that may have broken down as a result of addiction.

Alcohol abuse and addiction have long been a problem here in Wyoming. However, prescription opioid drug abuse, heroin, crack cocaine and methamphetamine rates are the most prevalent and they keep climbing.

In 2009-2010, the state was one of the top 10 states for rates of abuse and use of drugs in several categories, including but not limited to; illicit drug addiction among people aged 12 to 17, and past-month use and abuse of illicit drugs other than marijuana among people aged 12 to 17.

Approximately 7.07% of all Wyoming residents confessed to past-month use of illicit drugs. In comparison, the national average stood at 8.82 percent. In 2009, the rate of drug-induced fatalities in Wyoming fell lower than the national average.

Commonly Abused Substances in Wyoming

These are the most prevalently abused substances in the state. While there are many more substances abused here, these are by far the most widely used and abused and they are also responsible for the most drug-related overdoses and deaths.

1. Alcohol

From 2013-2014, 7.5% of the state's residents aged 12 years and over abused alcohol or struggled with alcohol addiction. This totaled to close to 36,000 residents.

Between the years 2006 and 2008, approximately 23% of all alcohol that was sold in the state was to underage drinkers. Wyoming's youth, according to a state report on crime and alcohol in Wyoming, indicated that teens lead the country in binge drinking as well as drink driving.

A 2016 state report cautioned that "The high percentage of alcohol-involved arrests, the inordinate number of arrests for public intoxication and driving under the influence, and the high levels of blood alcohol content or drivers arrested for being impaired represent real and significant threats to public safety." In this year, 57 percent of the state's custodial arrests involved alcohol. Alcohol-related arrests were highest in Teton, Sheridan and Fremont counties

2. Opioids

Some experts hold the belief that rates of heroin as well as prescription opioid painkiller abuse both climbed when the price of methamphetamine rocketed following effective governmental crackdowns on the drug's manufacture and distribution. Whatever the reason, the abuse of heroin as well as other opioids like Fentanyl can very quickly lead to addiction and overdose, the latter of which may be fatal.

Key opioid statistics include:

  • From 2015 to 2016, the rate of opioid-related overdose deaths in Wyoming climbed from 7.9 deaths per 100,000 people to 8.7 per 100,000 people.
  • Illicit drugand prescription opioid-related overdose deaths are currently stabilizing
  • Carbon County experienced the most inpatient hospital stays due to opioids

While some of these trends are certainly encouraging, without effective addiction treatment options and consistency in their application, these numbers could begin to climb again.

3. Methamphetamines

In the 1990s and early 2000s, significant rates of methamphetamine abuse began to pop up all across Wyoming. While the rates of meth abuse had somewhat declined for the past few years owing to meth lab crackdowns, the levels of abuse have once again started to inch upward in some Wyoming regions.

Meth addiction has continued to not just complicate but outright destroy lives of numerous Wyoming residents each day. Meth abuse may lead to erratic, abnormal, unpredictable and sometimes violent behavior. This is one of the reasons why meth is so often linked to crime not just in the state but in the country as a whole.

According to the 2016 Alcohol and Crime in Wyoming report:

  • Since 2010, arrests which involve meth have risen every year since, doubling between the years of 2013 and 2016
  • Meth was a fixture in 8.48% of all arrests in 2016. This totaled to 1,346 arrests.
  • Lincoln, Weston and Uinta counties all had higher rates of meth-anchored crime when compared to other state areas.

4. Marijuana

Marijuana is recognized as the 2nd greatest drug threat in the state and the most widely available and prevalently abused illicit drug in Wyoming. Law enforcement agencies have reported to seize more marijuana amounts than any other drug. Most of the marijuana that is available in Wyoming makes its way from Mexico.

Mexican criminal cartels transport and then distribute marijuana at wholesale and retail levels in the state. Cannabis is also grown indoors in the state. Local independent dealers distribute locally produced marijuana.

Marijuana abuse in the state keeps increasing by the year. Statistics from the Wyoming Department of Health, Division of Substance Abuse, have indicated a steady rise in admissions for marijuana treatment from the year 1997 through 1999.

Marijuana-related admissions totaled to 545 in 1997, rose to 667 admissions in the year 1998, and further climbed to 690 admissions in the year 1999. This represented an overall increase of 26% during this 3-year period. TEDS data also reflected a climb in the year 1998, from 582 marijuana admissions in 1997 to 726 admissions in 1998, before showing a decrease to 691 admissions in 1999.

5. Other Drugs

Amphetamine use and abuse led to a total of 687 individuals entering rehabs in the year 2010. The next-most common drug of choice was that of opiates other than heroin. In this class, at least 270 people were admitted for dependence. Finally, cocaine, whether smoked, injected, snorted etc. caused 75 people to enter drug addiction treatment.

Drug Related Injuries and Fatalities in Wyoming

Meth lab seizures have gone down since the year 2003, where there were 26 overall seizures compared to 5 in 2007. In the year 2009, Wyoming was among only a few states which had no meth lab seizures.

In 2007, 68 people died from drug use compared to 134 people who died in motor vehicle accidents and 76 people who died because of firearm incidents. Wyoming's figures for deaths were 13 per 100,000 compared to the national average of 12.7 per 100,000.

In the year 2009, 63 persons died from drug use in Wyoming. This is compared to the number of persons who died from motor vehicle accidents (107) and firearms (96) in the same year. Wyoming drug-induced deaths (11.6 per 100,000 residents) were lower than the national rate (12.8 per 100,000).

From 2006 to 2008, 4 in 10 deadly motor vehicle accidents were attributable to alcohol and 4 in 10 violent victimizations involved alcohol.

Addiction Prevention in Wyoming

Wyoming offers several programs which are designed to curb the growing rates of substance abuse among the locals. Some examples of these programs include:

a) Prescription Drug Monitoring Programs (PDMPs)

PDMPs are designed to track controlled substances which are prescribed by authorized practitioners and then dispensed by pharmacies. PDMPs serve numerous functions, including aiding in patient care, providing early warning signs of drug epidemics, and detecting drug diversion and insurance fraud.

b) Prescription Drug Monitoring

The Wyoming Prescription Drug Monitoring Program was established by the State Board of Pharmacy in 2005, as authorized under W.S. 35-7-1060 (enacted in 2004). The Board of Pharmacy collects Schedule II-IV controlled substance prescription information from all resident and non-resident retail pharmacies that dispense to residents of Wyoming and generates statistics and patient profiles accessible to health care providers and prescribers.

c) Medication Take-Back Programs

A comprehensive plan to address prescription drug abuse needs to be inclusive of proper disposal of unneeded, unused or expired medications. Providing persons with a secure yet convenient way to dispose controlled substances helps to prevent diversion as well as abuse of the substances. It also demonstrates sound environmental stewardship.

Addiction Treatment in Wyoming

In addition to the preventative programs in place, the state has a vast variety of addiction treatment and rehab programs available. These programs offer unique and highly personalized recovery services to admitted clients.

Going by the 2010 statistics on addiction treatment admissions, there was a total of 6,072 people that entered rehabilitation for drug and/or alcohol addiction. Of this number, 67.5% of the group of individuals was male, with the remnant 31.8% were females.

Wyoming has among the most elevated rates for alcohol abuse and addiction in the U.S. However, it stood among the lowest with regard to illicit drug abuse. This was according to a 2006 report. It should however be noted that in the intervening years, prescription drug use and abuse has really grown nationally, almost to the point of explosion.

Consider the following categories of substance abuse treatment and rehab services that are available in Wyoming:

i) Intervention Services

A professional interventionist attends to persons who are close to the person experiencing addiction in a bid to design an intervention. An intervention outlines the toll that drug abuse has taken on the addicted person and those who love and look out for them. It outlines an appropriate plan of treatment, with the ultimate objective of motivating them to actively seek assistance.

ii) Drug and Alcohol Detox Programs

Without professional help and medical support, withdrawal symptoms and cravings may push an addicted person to relapsing. A medical detoxification program provides round the clock medical support as the person's body works on healing. This treatment helps to protect a person from relapsing and it prepares them for the very next stage of treatment.

To help a person so that he or she is more comfortable and to minimize or even prevent withdrawal symptoms and cravings, the appropriate medications may be administered as is needed.

iii) Inpatient Addiction Treatment

After a person has completed any necessary detox, it's time to address the psychological and behavioral aspects of addiction in an inpatient drug and alcohol rehabilitation program.

Wyoming inpatient drug rehab programs offer a residential setting and intensive therapies that help a person address the social, mental, emotional and even spiritual impact of addiction. These tailored therapies help a person to adopt the relapse-prevention and sober-living skills that work best for their needs.

iv) Outpatient Addiction Treatment

While the traditional outpatient and intensive outpatient programs effectively provide standalone services for dependency treatment, these programs tend to be more valuable when they are used to support inpatient rehab.

In this capacity, outpatient programs may help a person to adjust to sobriety after receiving treatment.

Regardless of the drug rehab type you settle for, there is a high probability that you will find the following therapy kinds in place at the addiction recovery facility of your choice:

  • 12-step and non-12 support groups
  • Addiction education
  • Aftercare programs
  • Alcoholics Anonymous
  • Alumni programs
  • Cognitive behavioral therapy
  • Complementary therapies, including equine therapy, yoga, meditation, biofeedback, massage therapy, and journaling
  • Coping techniques
  • Couples counseling
  • Detox programs
  • Dialectical behavior therapy
  • Exercise therapy
  • External support groups
  • Family therapy
  • Group therapy meetings
  • Individual counseling
  • Inpatient programs
  • Intensive outpatient programs
  • Intervention services
  • Life skills training
  • Nutritional therapy
  • Outpatient programs
  • Relapse prevention
  • Sober living homes
  • Stress management
  • Vocational training

Getting Help

It is vital that you attend rehab as soon as you realize that you are having significant struggles with drug addiction. The earlier you are able to access a Wyoming rehab program and start your treatment, the higher the chances are that you will completely readjust to sobriety and proceed to function normally.











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