Do You Think Idaho Has A Drug Problem? Here’s Why You’re Wrong
Drug use and drug abuse are constant topics among all walks of life. Politicians discuss ways to govern their use, civilians talk about how it’s affecting their communities and neighborhoods, and drug users talk about it because it’s part of their life. We read about drug busts in Southern Idaho and drug abusers being arrested for crimes.
Surprise: If You Think Idaho Has a Drug Problem You're Wrong
Despite recent stories of drug use and massive drug busts, including 24 pounds of meth and nearly 5 pounds of fentanyl in one instance, there are studies claiming Idaho might not have the drug problem we think it does. Maybe it’s true since the first search results for ‘Idaho Drugs’ are for pharmacies.
In a recent report from WalletHub using 20 key metrics including arrest and overdose rates in each state, along with opioid prescriptions and drug testing laws, they found the states with the biggest and smallest drug problems. The report is similar to last year, except Idaho moved up a few notches. Which isn’t good for us.
But at least Idaho isn’t New Mexico, West Virginia, the District of Columbia, Louisiana, or Colorado because they are the top 5 states with the biggest drug issues. Idaho ranks 5th among the states with the smallest drug problems. Idaho ranked especially low in the number of adults using illicit drugs (40th in the nation), drug overdoses (44th), substance abuse treatment facilities (39th), and 34th in the nation for teens who use illicit drugs.
Ranking low on the list doesn’t mean there isn’t an issue though. Besides the large drug busts that have happened in recent months, drug-related stories litter our news feeds. Last week in Riggins there were 3 separate drug arrests made in one night, experts say fentanyl deaths have doubled in Idaho, and KMVT reported last year about the rise in drug use in Idaho.
Between 2010 and 2011, Idaho ranked above average in illicit drug use by adults. Maybe Idaho has made progress over the last 20 years as we continue to rank near the bottom of lists regarding drug use issues.