Drug abuse among baby boomers is on the rise. Over the past two decades, drug and alcohol treatment centers have seen an increase in the number of baby boomers admitted into their rehab programs. In fact, the amount of baby boomer admits into drug rehabs doubled from years 1992-2008.
Statistics show that illicit and prescription drugs are also being abused in large quantities by these seniors. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) compiled data from public records and drug rehabs that have caused concern for a generation that is now eligible for Medicare benefits.
The most commonly abused drugs by baby boomers are marijuana, cocaine, heroin, and prescription pain medication. During the 16 years studied by SAMHSA, admissions to treatment centers for marijuana abuse rose from 0.6% to 2.9%. Cocaine abuse skyrocketed from 2.9% to 11.4%, heroin use doubled from 7.2% to 16%, and prescription pill abuse rose from 0.7% to 3.5%.
Surprisingly, admissions to substance abuse treatment centers for alcohol abuse declined during the years studied from 84.6% to 59.9%. However, alcohol remains the leading drug abused by baby boomers.
The report revealed that more baby boomers are being admitted to drug rehabs for poly-addicted behaviors than ever before. This type of addict abuses more than one drug. The most common simultaneous addiction for baby boomers is alcohol and cocaine.