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Addiction & Recovery Statistics

More than one-half of American adults have a close family member who has or has had alcoholism [1a]

Alcohol contributes to 100,000 deaths annually, making it the third leading cause of preventable mortality in the US.[1b]

23 million Americans are addicted to some type of substance. (It is possible to have multiple addictions at the same time.)  Of these people, the majority (18 million) are addicted to alcohol. [1c]

More than nine million children live with a parent dependent on alcohol [1c]  

7.8% (19.3 million) persons aged 12 or older needed treatment for their alcohol problem in the past year.   The majority of those who needed alcohol treatment either did not perceive the need for treatment or did not receive it. [2]

10% of Americans have used an illicit drug in the past month. [3]

50% of all emergency room visits for trauma and/or injury are alcohol related. [4]

6 million persons used a prescription drug non‐medically within the past month. [5]

14.6 million used a prescription non‐medically within the past year. [5]

The earlier young people begin drinking, the more likely they will have problems in school including poor academic performance and attendance issues. As they become adults, they are more likely to be involved in violent acts and other kinds of criminal behavior. A child who begins drinking alcohol in his or her mid-teens (age 15) is four times more likely to become an alcoholic than a person who had his or her first drink at the age of 21. [12]

Addiction in the Workplace Statistics

Problems related to alcohol and drug abuse cost American businesses roughly $81 billion in lost productivity in just one year. [6]

Studies have shown that drug abusing employees function at about 67 percent of their capacity. [6]

77.6 percent of the estimated 20.3 million substance-abusing or substance-dependent people in the United States are employed. [6]

More than 60 percent of adults know someone who has reported for work under the influence of alcohol or other drugs. [7]

15% of employees either drank before reporting to work, used during the workday, were under the influence at work or came to work with a hangover in the past 12 months. [8]

Substance abuse costs the nation’s economy an estimated $276 billion a year. [9a]

63% of adult workers consume alcohol in their free time. Of these, 9% are heavy drinkers. [9]

30% of all working Americans are binge drinkers. [9]

Replacing an employee can cost from 25% to almost 200% of the employee’s annual compensation. [9b]

14.8 million Americans use illicit drugs and over 75% of these are employed. [10]

500 million workdays are lost annually due to alcohol abuse. [10]

Employees with alcohol related problems have health care costs that are double those of their peers. [11]

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Journal: Alcohol Research & Health: Highlights From the Tenth Special Report to Congress, Health Risks and Benefits of Alcohol Consumption (Volume 24, Number 1, 2000 ed.) Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office. (Dawson and Grant 1998)
[1b]  Mokdad, Ali H., PhD, James S. Marks, MD, MPH, Donna F. Stroup, PhD, MSc, Julie L. Gerberding, MD, MPH, "Actual Causes of Death in the United States, 2000," Journal of the American Medical Association, March 10, 2004, Vol. 291, No. 10, pp. 1238, 1241
[2]  SAMSHA: The NSDUH Report; Alcohol Treatment: Need, Utilization, and Barriers  
[3] Journal of Applied Psychology 2006
[4] Alcohol Problems among Emergency Department Patients Centers for Disease Control 2001
[5] SAMHSA - Misuse of Prescription Drugs
[6] Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, 2007
[7] Hazelden 2003 Workplace Addiction Survey
[8] Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs 2006
[9] Harwood, H., Fountain, D., & Livermore, G. (1998). The Economic Costs of Alcohol & Drug Abuse in the U.S. 1992. Rockville, MD: National Institute on Drug Abuse and National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism.
[9b] 2007 National Study‐Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)
[10] SAMHSA ‐ Drugs in the Workplace
[11] Schneider Institute for Health Policy 2001

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