New information about mood-altering drug use can increase understanding for health providers.
A recent survey conducted by the Gallup organization sought the percentage of people in each state who took drugs almost daily to alter their mood. These included street drugs and prescription medications to help them relax or cope with the stress of living in some way.
The study revealed that nationally, 18.9% of Americans admitted to using drugs almost every day to relax or alter their moods. The states with the lowest amount of drug use were Alaska, Wyoming, and California. Six of the top ten states were located in the South, and all were well above 20%.
These states were Kentucky, Alabama, Louisiana, South Carolina, Mississippi, and Missouri. The definition of "drugs" was left open to the interpretation of the person answering the question, and could include street drugs, prescription medications, nicotine or alcohol.
Some southern states have more problems with painkillers and opioids in correlation with smokers.
The results could also potentially be very short if people didn't automatically include their drinking or smoking as being considered drug use. Southern states have been found to have more problems with painkillers as well as more smokers, according to earlier research by Gallup and other sources. With the latest information coming from the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index, the same research found that those people who use a drug almost daily to try and feel better are generally in a poorer state of overall well-being.
More information for health providers can lead to more hope for people needing treatment!
Hopefully, the results from the survey can help healthcare providers to find other ways to treat patients than giving them drugs, and people are able to see that their total state of health is negatively affected by using drugs repeatedly, even if they're legal or prescribed.
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