The National Institute for Drug Abuse has compiled statistics that paint a troubling picture of opiate use in St. Louis, Missouri; namely, that the number of patients who underwent treatment for opiates has been steadily increasing throughout the years. Heroin alone caused about 117 cases of death during the first half of 2013, with a staggering number of 2,274 users admitted to drug rehab in Missouri.
Heroin is more prevalent than any other drug in the opiate family because it’s less expensive and remains consistently available and easily accessible to drug addicts. Other opiate, non-heroin drugs have a relatively low number of treatment admissions, reaching about 254 patients in 2013. What’s disturbing about this data, though, is that about 24% of opiate users in St. Louis are under the age of 24, meaning that opiates are most popular among adolescents and young adults who acquire it for recreational use.