Houston, Texas Drug and Alcohol Rehab Information

Treatment facilities in the Houston area offer an impressive set of resources to individuals struggling with substance abuse. With 22.7 million people in need of treatment nationally in 2013, just 2.5 million people received that treatment.[1] Leaders in the Houston area treatment industry, and throughout Texas, want to increase that number and improve the quality of rehab units across the city and state.

Houston Area Drug and Alcohol Abuse

With around 2.2 million people living in Houston, the city is more than just another busy tourist destination.[2] Behind the scenes of everyday life, many residents are struggling to stay afloat while abusing drugs. Drug abuse rates run high in Texas, and the local trafficking operations are likely responsible for a large part of that. In 2013, 39,676 people entered treatment facilities in the state for the treatment of a drug or alcohol problem.[3]

Issues of alcohol abuse haven’t been any kinder to Texans. Among those who sought treatment in 2013, 11,081 cited alcohol as all or part of their problem.[4] In 2012, 3.9 percent of females and 8.6 percent of males residing in Houston County admitted to heavy drinking practices.[5] Another 7.5 percent of females and 21.8 percent of males in the region reported engaging in binge drinking.[6] Nationwide, binge drinking rates are around 17 percent, with men being two times as likely to engage in the practice than women.[7]

Outside of alcoholism, many others still battle alcohol abuse. Not everyone who drinks heavily is dependent on alcohol. However, these individuals still account for a large number of adverse outcomes related to drinking, such as alcohol poisoning and automobile accidents. Around 17 percent of males and 8 percent of females will fit the criteria for a diagnosis of alcoholism at some point in their lives.[8]

binge drinking

Factors Influencing Abuse and Addiction

Substance abuse and addiction can occur in every demographic, but there are often many factors that combine to create the perfect environment for dependency to thrive. For example, someone who grows up in a household where substance abuse is prevalent is far more likely to turn to the same lifestyle as an adolescent or adult than someone who grows up in a drug-free household. Parental substance addiction predisposes children to an eight times greater risk of developing a dependency on drugs or alcohol themselves.[9]

Consequences of Drug and Alcohol Abuse

Death is a more likely consequence when you’re abusing drugs or alcohol. Texas lost 2,343 residents in 2007 to drug abuse.[10] An annual average of 6,514 people died every year between 2006 and 2010 in the state due to alcohol abuse.[11] Often, these numbers are actually a great deal larger than what statistical data puts forth. Many deaths are caused by indirect factors associated with drugs and alcohol every year, but national and state level data frequently accounts only for those directly caused by the substances, such as overdose. Other deaths stem from both though, including but not limited to:

  • Fatalities occurring from automobile accidents where substance abuse was a factor
  • Aspiration of vomit while passed out
  • Respiratory distress
  • Cardiac arrest
  • Stroke

Even if individuals are lucky enough to avoid harming themselves or others while driving drunk, they might not escape police. It is estimated that individuals who drive drunk and get caught have already engaged in the practice around 80 times before their arrest.[12] Driving under the influence is a serious charge that isn’t taken lightly in the state of Texas. Deaths stemming from drunken driving accidents reached 1,337 in 2013 for the state of Texas, which led the entire nation that year.[13] Getting caught even one time comes with stiff fines and 3-180 days in jail, but repeated offense bring stiffer penalties – up to two years without a license following a much longer prison sentence.[14]

Arrest rates for drug-related activity are no better. In 2014, 139,471 people were arrested for a drug-related crime in the state.[15] Individuals who are caught with certain substances are looking at hefty prison sentences and steep fines, as well.

Trafficking is the biggest issue in the Houston region. The Mexican drug cartel has developed strong ties within the community over the last few decades. While drug busts and seizures are occurring almost daily in the region, the amount of drugs being smuggled into the area is impossible for law enforcement to keep up with.

prison sentences


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