Berkeley in Summary and in Review

Berkeley is a very well known, recognized, and quite popular city on the east shore of San Francisco Bay in northern Alameda County, California, in the United States.  It is named after the Irish eighteenth-century bishop and philosopher known as George Berkeley.  It borders the cities of Oakland and Emeryville to the south and the city of Albany and unincorporated community of Kensington to the north.  Its eastern border with Contra Costa County generally follows the ridge of the Berkeley Hills. Its population at the 2010 census as recorded by the United States Census Bureau was 112,580.

Berkeley is known for being the site of the oldest campus in the University of California system, the University of California, Berkeley, of the infamous and recognized Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory which is managed and operated by the university, and the Graduate Theological Union.  The city is also known for being one of the most politically liberal cities in the United States.

Berkeley is also the location of a number of nationally prominent businesses, many of which have been pioneers in their own various areas of operation and simply serving to draw more fame and recognition to the city.  Notable businesses include Chez Panisse, birthplace of California cuisine, Peet’s Coffee’s original store, the Claremont Resort, punk rock haven 924 Gilman, and Saul Zaentz’s Fantasy Studios.  Notable former businesses include pioneer bookseller Cody’s Books, The Nature Company, and the Berkeley Co-op too.

Drug Addiction and Substance Abuse Strikes Home in Berkeley

For all that is good and going well in this city, the city still has not been able to escape drug addiction and substance abuse.  This has been a truly trying and difficult situation for the residents of Berkeley and little has been done yet to curb the issue or even slow it down.  This may indeed be because of how fast drug addiction and substance abuse has hit the city, and how the city never really struggled much with addiction before.  Now the problem is without a doubt a major one, and it shows little to no sign of diminishing or lessening as the years go by.  Something must be done soon before the issue grows out of control and effectively overtakes the city itself.

Facts and Statistics: Real World Info on Drug Abuse in Berkeley and Across the Nation

Without a doubt the worst of the drug problem in Berkeley has been with prescription drug abuse and addiction amongst young adults.  This is also a major issue all across the nation too, and it has been for some time.  Listed below are some facts and statistics about the issue as it pertains to not only Berkeley, but also to the entire nation when it comes to young adult prescription drug abuse:

• Thirteen percent of all teens in the United States report that they have taken prescription stimulants at some point, such as Ritalin or Adderall, that were not prescribed for them.

• Nine percent of teens, (about 1.9 million teens all in all), report having misused or abused benzodiazepines in the past year, (up from just 6 percent in 2008), and 6 percent of teens, (1.3 million), report abuse of benzodiazepine in the past month, (sadly up from 4 percent in 2008).

• Unfortunately, one in four teens, (26 percent), believes that prescription drugs can be used as a study aid and believes that they are not harmful.

• Almost two-thirds of college seniors will be offered prescription stimulants for non-medical use during their college career and a full 31 percent will use them at least once during their college career.

• Studying is the predominant motive for misusing prescription stimulants, (73.8 percent to 91.5 percent annually), but lower grade point average and alcohol or cannabis use disorders were consistently associated with abuse in many cases too.

• In one study, the non-medical users of prescription stimulants skipped 16.1 percent of their classes while non-users skipped only 9.4 percent of their classes, proving that it’s not that great of a study aide after all.

• The most common source of prescription stimulants for college students was a friend with a legitimate prescription, (73.9 percent annually).

• The non-medical and abusive use of prescription stimulants is more common among college students than high school students in fact.  Studies have found that 4.1 percent to 10.8 percent of college students reported using prescription stimulants for non-medical purposes during the past year alone.

Rehabilitation and Prevention: Beating the Habit in Berkeley

In February of this past year, the Controlled Substance Monitoring Database of 2015 Report to the 109th Tennessee General Assembly proved that the state as a whole showed marked results from offering not only prescription drug take back programs for individuals who no longer wanted their meds but also computer software to physicians that monitored prescriptions and potentials for drug abuse.  In 2010, Tennessee had one of the worst prescription drug abuse issues in the nation.  Now the problem has been reduced tremendously thanks to these programs.

For Berkeley, the answer to sobriety for all their residents lies in prevention, (like in the methods listed above), and in rehabilitation.  With a combination of good strategies to stop abuse and also with rehabilitation to cure those already afflicted, the city will be on its way to sobriety and happiness and recovery for all.

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