Across the U.S., there has been a 60% increase of heroin abuse, especially among first-time users. A survey by substance abuse and health service administration showed that Vermont had 15.3 % of its population using illegal drugs, 13.3% were using marijuana and 14.5 % of the teenagers were smoking pot. The Governor declared that his States’ increase in heroin abuse is slowly becoming an epidemic.
Non-medical prescription abuse of painkillers, methamphetamine, and cocaine has slowly decreased. The increase in heroin abuse is steadily rising. It may be due to basic economics. Illegally obtained prescription pain killers are expensive and hard to get whereas heroin is cheaper and easily obtained.
Most cities are reporting that high income abusers of prescription drugs have shifted to the cheaper and easily available heroin.
Prescriptions drugs are expensive and as laws have cracked down upon non-medical prescription painkillers, the abusers have turned to heroin, which is cheaper and easier to find and buy. This shift is by default. The supply of cheap heroin is meeting the demand for an inexpensive alternative.
The users are buying it and often shooting up in public places. Police find drug users comatose or dead, in vehicles, in bathrooms of fast-food places, in motels, on mass transit, libraries, in parks and hospitals. The visibility of drug abusers may be ascribed to the nature of the scourge, which has burgeoned largely out of the addiction of legal painkillers and has extended to urban and suburban areas. The number of people who die every day from overdoses of heroin and painkillers is about 80. It is difficult to track how many deaths occur in public spaces, but law enforcement officials agree that the number is indeed high. Heroin abuse is epidemic!