Drug & Alcohol Statistics for Tyler, TX & East Texas
How Has Substance Abuse Impacted Tyler, TX?
Substance abuse devastated many communities and families throughout the United States. But how does it affect our community in East Texas? In this article, we’ll explore drug and alcohol statistics for East Texas as well as the state at large to better understand the East Texas community.
Texas is one of the worst states with adult illicit drug problems. However, many people are surprised to discover that East Texas has a higher rate of substance use than the rest of the state.
Drug Abuse Statistics in Tyler and East Texas
Opioids are the most commonly used illicit drugs in East Texas. In fact, East Texas has been said to have an “opiate epidemic”. Studies show that 2,368 people over age 18 in Smith County and Cherokee Counties have an opioid disorder. The majority of those addicts are over 45.
Two East Texas cities, Texarkana and Longview, were ranked in the top 25 cities in the US for opioid abuse. Some attribute East Texas’ substance abuse to the region being made up of small, rural communities where there aren’t many recreational opportunities. Because of this, teens and adults turn to illicit drugs. While it may begin recreationally, the statistics prove that a bit of “fun” turns into life threatening addictions.
Having such easy access to illicit drugs in small rural communities makes it hard for East Texans who are caught in the trap of substance abuse to get out.
...Pretty much every place will promise you a “mind, body, soul” approach to recovery, but this is the only place I’ve been that truly delivers on that promise. Renewal Lodge’s program has a double-emphasis on Buddhist-inspired mindfulness skills and techniques, combined with a traditional Big Book/12 Step education.
...I loved all the scheduled meditations, the staff is fantastic and the food is good. I have never been to treatment before so I was anxious when I arrived. The facility, other patients and environment overall put my nerves at ease. I have had a great experience here and would highly recommend Renewal Lodge to my friends and family or anyone seeking treatment.
...I know that sounds dramatic but I came in here as a hopeless alcoholic with crushing depression and paralyzing anxiety I'm leaving this Sunday and I feel like a completely different person. I can't wait to start my life. They don't just sell sobriety here, but a way into true, meaningful, purposeful, lasting happiness
...Renewal Lodge helped me find that missing piece which was discovered by learning and practicing mindfulness. The MIR programming (Mindfulness in Recovery) was an absolute game changer. Anyone struggling to put the pieces together would benefit greatly from Renewal Lodge.
...the start of my time I was very guarded and scared to open up but I soon learned it was a safe haven with the meditation and mindfulness experience it has by far surpassed any other treatment plan in the past.
Tyler’s Highways Contribute To Illicit Drug Abuse
One surprising factor in East Texas’ drug problem is two major interstates. I-45 runs just west of Tyler and connects Dallas to Houston. I-20 runs through Lindale, TX which is just 20 min north of Tyler. It is a direct connection from Dallas, Texas all the way to Atlanta, Georgia. This means that Tyler and East Texas lie right in the path of illicit drug transportation.
Alcohol Abuse Statistics in Tyler and East Texas
Smith County is no exception. In 2023, statistics show that 17.9% Smith County adults binge drank at least once in the last year.
The cycle of abuse often begins when parents and adult loved ones allow teenagers to drink alcohol at an early age. In East Texas, 65% of minors get alcohol from adults, both relatives or friends. Studies show that anyone who has their first drink at the age of 15 is six times more likely to become alcohol dependent than adults who wait until 21 to drink. On average, East Texans have their first drink by the time they are 12.9. The entire state average is 13.1. This puts East Texans at greater risk of alcohol abuse.
Drug and Alcohol-Related Overdose Statistics in Tyler and East Texas
The increase in overdose deaths in Texas is troubling. According to recent statistics, overdose deaths have increased by 33% in Texas, leading to the death of more than 4,000 people.
Recent studies show that drug and alcohol overdoses in East Texas are rising as well. Smith County’s alcohol related death rate per 100,000 people is 5.0 for alcohol-induced deaths and 9.4 for drug-induced deaths.
A major contributor to overdoses in East Texas is its rural nature. Studies show that rural populations avoid substance abuse treatment. This means that rural East Texans are at a higher risk of overdose and continue misusing illicit substances. Since East Texas has more rural communities that don’t prioritize substance abuse treatment, people are more likely to turn to unsafe practices such as injection drugs. This increases the risk of contracting infectious diseases like HIV.
Arrests Due to Substance Abuse in Tyler and East Texas
Substance abuse is a growing problem in East Texas. According to recent data, drug-related arrests for adults in East Texas are higher than the entire state. Texas was 701.2 per 100,000 people. Whereas, Texas was 634.2 per 100,000 people.
Additionally, the substance abuse in Smith County is very concerning. Smith County is the third-highest in the state for alcohol and drug-related incarcerations per 100,000 people.
With the rising numbers of drug abuse in Tyler and East Texas, arrests will only continue to rise.
Substance Abuse Treatment Needs in East Texas
East Texas is facing a serious substance abuse crisis. Proper substance abuse treatment is needed to stop the increasing rates of victims. However, this is challenging because East Texas doesn’t have long term treatment facilities for substance abuse. This means providers can’t make right referrals. And patients are left without the proper care they deserve.
In-patient treatment facilities in Tyler, TX lack resources. It’s reported that access is extremely limited. Patients are put on wait lists for months. This delays recovery.
Recovery resources and programs in East Texas are almost nonexistent for both patients and care providers. Few of the programs that are available actually meet the criteria needed to provide care.
East Texas also has few dual diagnosis and mental health counseling programs. These programs ought to treat the mental health condition that leads to addiction.
Drug and Alcohol Treatment Center for Tyler and East Texas
Renewal Lodge is an in-patient rehab serving Tyler, TX. We personalize care for each patient and provide programs such as:
Our beautiful campus in Elgin, Texas is just outside of Austin, TX. We’re just 3 and a half hours away from Tyler.
We empower our patients to find victory over substance abuse.