Older Individuals with Drug Problems Regret Choices

Older Individuals with Drug Problems Regret Choices

There is a new challenge existing within the health and social services. The number of illicit drug users getting older and dealing with chronic health problems. As a result, these individuals are facing a reduced quality of life.

In a recent Science Daily release, a study completed by UK researchers was examined. An exploratory study, this work suggests that older people who continue to engage in risky drug use are presenting an under-researched and international problem.

As one researcher noted, this is a vulnerable group and continued drug use, addiction and life experiences will most likely result in the degradation in health and a poorer quality of life. At the same time, these individuals will also face increased chronic conditions and increased health needs.

Data from the United States indicates that the number of individuals over the age of 50 who are seeking help for problems related to drugs or alcohol will rise from 1.7 million in 2000 to 4.4 million by 2020.

According to the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction, the number of individuals over the age of 65 who require treatment will double over the same time period.

Key findings from this study suggest that most of these individuals began taking drugs as teens or as young adults, often for recreational use; some of these individuals started using drugs later in life to deal with stressful events; meeting a drug using partner could also lead someone to use. All people involved in this study wished they had never started taking drugs and advise young people to refrain.
 

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