Crystal blue waters, scenic beaches and a variety of local attractions to explore are just some of the most popular reasons why Palm Beach County is considered a paradise. While you might be picturing locals spending all their time playing golf or shoring up their tan under the sun, Palm Beach County has a darker side that often goes unnoticed.
Palm Beach County has been fighting a rise in substance abuse for the better half of the last 15 years. Why are people turning to substance abuse when they’re part of this gorgeous community? We’re going to take an inside look at the substance abuse in Palm Beach County to help find the answer.
Why Does Palm Beach County Have a Drug Use Problem?
The Center of the Opioid Epidemic
At the start of the opioid epidemic, Florida and more specifically, Palm Beach County, saw a drastic rise in opioid abuse. We now know this was due to local doctors prescribing opioids at an alarming rate. In fact, this was one of the driving forces behind the creation of the Florida Prescription Drug Monitoring Program.
This initiative has helped stem the tide of new opioid abuse, but addiction is unfortunately now a way of life for many people in the area. In 2017 alone, there were 54 opioid prescriptions per 100 people in Palm Beach County.
A Shift from Prescription Painkillers to Other Illicit Drugs
As Palm Beach County and the Florida state government cracked down on opioid prescriptions, other drug use emerged. Heroin quickly replaced prescription opioids as the drug of choice for many people struggling with substance abuse. In 2016, there were 194 heroin related deaths in the county.
But heroin isn’t the only drug that has seen a spike in use. Fentanyl is a strong synthetic opioid that is roughly 50 to 100 times stronger than morphine. Beyond its strength, fentanyl has been “laced” with other drugs – something that is typically unknown to users, increasing their likelihood of relapse. This powerful drug was responsible for 335 deaths in Palm Beach County in 2018.
Circulation of Laced Drugs
As introduced above, Palm Beach County residents have been plagued by an excess of heroin, cocaine and painkillers laced with fentanyl. While this practice isn’t new, it has made already dangerous drugs even more precarious for those living in Palm Beach County.
One of the key motivators behind lacing drugs lies in the economics. Lacing a drug like cocaine with fentanyl makes the drug cheaper to manufacture. Palm Beach County has been a focus for drug manufacturers because of the opioid epidemic and increased substance abuse in the area.
Where to Find Substance Abuse Near Palm Beach County?
If you or a loved one is struggling with substance abuse in Palm Beach County, it can feel like you’re trapped with nowhere to turn. The good news is personalized support for addiction is closer than you think. Footprints Beachside Recovery is a family-run addiction treatment in Pinellas County, not too far from Palm Beach County.
At Footprints Beachside Recovery, you can get away from the environment that’s encouraged your addiction and envelope yourself in a continuum of care that sets you up for recovery success. You can detox safely from your alcohol or drug use and get to the bottom of your addiction and destructive behaviors in day/night treatment. Our team will walk with you every step of the way and help you develop the necessary skills, habits and routine to achieve and maintain long-lasting sobriety.
With Our Help, You Can Reach Lasting Recovery
At Footprints Beachside Recovery, we know what’s it’s like to struggle with addiction – but we also know what it’s like to recover from it. That’s why we’re sure you have the potential to reach lasting recovery. With over 10 years of experience serving individuals from Palm Beach County and other areas of Florida, we’re confident we can help you work through your substance abuse and turn your life around.
If you’re ready to break free from addiction and regain what addiction has taken from you, contact our admissions team today.