From: Jacksonville, Florida
The Crave For Change
Our nation has a glaringly obvious addiction crisis at hand, and it has gotten out of control. It is no secret that drug abuse and addiction has been on the rise in recent years. From high school students struggling with nicotine addictions, to Seniors living with opioid addictions: There are many theories that exist to explain why this is happening, but I believe that it goes deeper than the surface level answers.
It has been said that drug abuse can be linked to individuals suffering from poverty, strictly because they do not have access to expensive higher-level education that would advise against the abuse of drugs. On the flip side, this means that wealthy people are not as likely to develop addictions because they have been educated not to use drugs due to the harm they can inflict. However, it has actually been proven in the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs that this is not necessarily the case.
I believe that our nation’s drug issue actually stems from the increasing household wealth of individuals, especially during the recent pandemic. Many people, of all ages and walks of life, suffered severe consequences from the COVID-19 pandemic. For many, it brought mental illnesses to light that they had either repressed or did not know they were suffering from in the first place. The suffering that this brings, along with the grief and suffering of family members of those that passed during the pandemic, is immeasurable. Furthermore, it is a viable cause for the spike in drug abuse in our nation.
The stimulus checks that were distributed during the pandemic were intended to do more harm than good, but they may have been unknowingly feeding the growing addict community. Many who are suffering or grieving in America turn to drugs, and that coping mechanism often leads to nasty addictions that can be near impossible to overcome. The consequences of this addiction can lead to even more grief and even more suffering, which in turn digs the hole deeper for the individual. The effects on society may never be reversed. More school age children are now exposed to nicotine addictions, more elderly folks are now hooked on opioids for the pain they suffer from, and more. The wealth that many households acquired from the stimulus checks may have very well gone into the drug market, as the supply and demand chain become even more ruthless.
The way that I believe we can remedy this crisis is by providing better access to rehab facilities for everyone in the nation. With rehabilitation facilities, more individuals would be better educated on the ramifications of their substance abuse as well as receiving counseling. The benefits of counseling or psychotherapy would help people to overcome the social pressure to continue their drug abuse and to accept that this is their life and they must take charge of it. By helping someone to realize that their life is in their own hands, and that their grief is surmountable, real change can be achieved. Real change is what our nation so desperately needs. Real change is what the nation should be craving, not their next fix.