Addiction and Treatment Statistics for Colorado

Individuals who have a substance use disorder in Colorado have the option to choose from more than 125 different treatment centers in the Rocky Mountain State. Facilities are located throughout the state, from Fort Collins to Colorado Springs, and offer many options for recovery and lifelong wellness.

Colorado Substance Abuse Statistics

More than 530 people died of an opioid-related overdose in Colorado in 2016, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). Here are more troubling statistics from Colorado:

  • Heroin-related deaths more than doubled in 2016, from 91 to 234, with synthetic opioid deaths also increasing.
  • Hundreds of people in Colorado experience HIV, Hepatitis C, and HCV related to intravenous drug use (IDU).
  • The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) report 46,000 youth ages 12-17 used marijuana in the past month in 2015, and 52,000 had used alcohol at a similar rate.
  • About 7.5% of people age 12 or older reported an alcohol use disorder in 2015, according to SAMHSA, 1.4% higher than the national average.

Choosing The Right Rehab Program In Colorado

With plenty of options, it’s crucial to understand the essential components of quality care. While approaches and treatment methods may differ from center to center, here are some things to pay attention to:

  • Accreditation: Centers can be licensed through Colorado’s State Dept. of Mental Health and Dept. of Health, or accredited by organizations like the Joint Commission and Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF). The accreditation process covers program standards, facilities, treatment plans, and staff qualifications.
  • Evidence-based Approaches: A program which refers to offering “evidence-based” solutions is referring to offering treatment and rehabilitation services that have been proven effective through government-sponsored, peer-reviewed studies.
  • Payment: Programs may accept insurance, including government programs and privately-funded insurers, cash, and self or family financing.
  • Length/Location: Residential programs range from short-term detox programs to long-term residential recovery programs. In some cases, people may be required to travel to the desired rehab center.

Colorado Drug And Alcohol Rehab Services

Colorado offers a broad range of rehabilitation services for individuals with drug or alcohol diagnoses. Each rehab center may use specific treatment models, but here are some specialized services to consider:

  • Drug and Alcohol Detox Programs: Detox programs are medically-supervised programs designed to monitor, supervise, and assist individuals from physical and mental withdrawal symptoms. Detox programs are not rehab programs, but are usually the first step in the treatment process.
  • Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT): Medication-assisted treatment (MAT) programs assist individuals with opioid or alcohol diagnoses to cease using the substance while being offered an FDA-approved medication along with counseling. MAT programs use a “whole patient” approach, not just medication.
  • Behavioral Therapy: Behavioral therapy is an evidence-based method designed to change thinking and attitudes towards drugs or alcohol. Behavioral approaches can include cognitive-behavioral therapy, contingency management, motivational enhancement, family therapies, and 12-step facilitation programs.
  • Treatment for Co-Occurring Disorders (Dual Diagnosis): Dual diagnosis treatment programs recognize that individuals with addiction may also have co-occurring mental health diagnoses, like depression or anxiety. Dual diagnosis programs use an integrated approach to address both conditions at the same time.

Finding Addiction Treatment in Colorado

People struggling with addiction can find the treatment right for them by taking an assessment of their resources (insurance, financial, family, community) and doing research. They should be prepared to travel to rehab centers, talk to treatment providers, and work with professionals to find the program that is right for them in seeking recovery and rehabilitation.

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration - Behavioral Health Barometer Colorado

National Institute on Drug Abuse - Colorado Opioid Summary

National Institute on Drug Abuse - Principles of Drug Addiction Treatment

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