When the economy is bad, drug abuse increases because of the tendency for people who are suffering from economic deprivation to self medicate. However, there are also rare instances wherein the usage of certain drugs increases when the economy is booming. According to a white paper published by researchers from the Vanderbilt University, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration and the University of Colorado Denver, there is an undeniable and contrary relationship between drug abuse and the state of the economy.
According to the report that was published by the National Bureau of Economic Research, there is very strong evidence that during an economic downturn, the use of substances like hallucinogen and prescription pain relievers’ increases. While most of the studies on drug addiction usually focus on alcohol and cannabis addiction the research made by Vanderbilt University and University of Colorado took into account illicit drugs other than marijuana.
Based on the data, while drug use tends to increase during economic difficulties, a certain number of drugs become popular when the economy is thriving. LSD is particularly pro-cyclical meaning that the drug is used during good times. Meanwhile, drugs like Ecstasy are counter-cyclical. The main takeaway here is the increase in substance abuse disorders during an economic downturn particularly hallucinogen and prescription pain relievers.
However, what is more alarming based on the results of the research is the significant cut in drug treatment policies during an economic downturn. To put it simply, it is a wrong move at a wrong time. The results of the research are very significant in understanding the optimal policy responses when the economy is booming and when there is a downturn. Most of the debates on public funding for drug treatment focus on penalties for drug use. The role of economic conditions is obviously ignored in the drug policies.
Passages Malibu is a drug treatment center that is available 24/7 to extend help if your friend or love one is suffering from substance abuse. While the goal is to help patients recover, holistic therapy methods are undertaken to discover the underlying reason for the alcohol and drug addiction.