10 US States Where Substance Abuse Is Commonplace

Substance abuse is a pervasive problem that affects communities and individuals across the country. While nationwide initiatives are addressing the issue, some states’ issues are more severe than others. Here, we’ll list ten states where drug and alcohol abuse are routine.

West Virginia

Substance Abuse

Often topping the charts for abuse of opioids and benzodiazepines like Xanax and Valium, West Virginia’s substance abuse problems are significant. Factors like limited healthcare access and economic struggles contribute to its challenges in tackling drug use and addiction.

New Hampshire

The state of New Hampshire, like many others, has seen an increase in overdose deaths, particularly those related to the powerful opioid fentanyl. The state’s size worsens the effects of substance abuse, creating sizable challenges for authorities and healthcare providers.


This state also struggles with high rates of drug use, most of which stems from painkiller overprescription. The increase has led to a greater incidence of opioid addiction and overdose, affecting communities and straining Kentucky’s limited healthcare resources.


As part of the Rust Belt, Ohio faces numerous hardships that contribute to its substance abuse problems. Methamphetamine, heroin, and opioids are prevalent, creating challenges in rural and urban areas of the state.


Despite its postcard-perfect landscapes, Alaska battles severe substance abuse issues including methamphetamine addiction and alcoholism. The state’s remote location makes it harder for individuals to get the treatment they need, making the problem worse and decreasing the chances of successful recovery from addiction.

New Mexico

The state of New Mexico has had problems with substance abuse for many years, with opioid addiction, alcohol abuse, and methamphetamine use being the most common challenges the state’s residents face. A lack of mental health resources and socioeconomic factors contribute to New Mexico’s struggles.

Rhode Island

Despite its status as America’s smallest state, Rhode Island grapples with a full-size substance abuse problem. High opioid overdose and death rates have led the state to implement several harm reduction initiatives, but Rhode Island’s battle goes on.


Like other states on this list, Maryland faces significant challenges with synthetic opioids such as fentanyl. These difficulties have led the state’s leaders to address the crisis, but drugs still pose a sizable threat in Maryland’s cities and towns.


The state of Vermont has seen a spike in opioid overdoses, creating a public health crisis. Vermont has made great strides in making treatment more accessible, but it has a long journey toward recovery.


The home of Sin City, Nevada contends with alcoholism, prescription drug abuse, and methamphetamine use. The state’s tourism and entertainment industries make substances more accessible, to the detriment of visitors and residents alike.

A Nationwide Problem That Affects Everyone

America has struggled with drug abuse since the Nixon administration, and the battle isn’t over yet. Efforts at the city, state, and federal levels are ongoing, addressing the root causes of addiction and giving individuals the support needed to recover from drug and alcohol abuse. By uncovering these issues, we can foster an understanding of the intricacies of substance abuse and create a healthier, more compassionate society.

While these ten states have some of the country’s highest rates of substance abuse, it is truly a nationwide problem. With help from family, friends, and the community, it is possible to overcome addiction.

We are not doctors and this is in no way intended to be used as medical advice and we cannot be held responsible for your results. As with any product, service or supplement, use at your own risk. Always do your own research before using.

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