Parlier is a lovely and pleasant, quiet city in Fresno County, in the state of California, in the United States of America. As of the 2010 census as reported by the United States Census Bureau, the city had a total population of 14,494, up from 11,145 in the year of 2000. Parlier is located just 5.5 miles east-southeast of Selma, at an elevation of 344 feet.

Parlier is a pretty poor town.  The median income for a household in the city is only $24,539, and the median income for a family is $24,275. Males have a median income of $16,585 versus only $17,589 for females. The per capita income for the city is only $7,078. 36.0% of the population and 33.5% of families are below the poverty line in fact. Out of the total people living in poverty, no less than 42.9% are under the age of 18 and 18.6% are 65 or older.

Substance Abuse in Poverty

As has always been the case, those who live below the poverty line always experience a higher-than normal tendency to use and abuse drugs and alcohol.  This has been the lot of life in this small town, especially recently.  The issue and the crisis indeed has gotten pretty bad here and has shown little to no chances of getting better any time soon unless major action is taken to correct it.  Factually speaking, drug and alcohol abuse and addiction tends to make a big problem in the state of California every year too.  For example:

• Among American youths of the age of 12 to 17 in California, the rate of current illicit drug use was lower in the year of 2013 (8.8 percent) than in 2002 to 2007 (ranging from 9.6 to 11.6 percent) and in 2009 to 2012 (ranging from 9.5 to 10.1 percent).  It skyrocketed in 2014 and 2015 though.

• Among those adults of the age of 26 or older in California, the rate of current illicit drug use in 2013, (7.3 percent to be exact), was similar to the rate in 2012 (7.0 percent), but it was higher than the rates in 2002 to 2011 (ranging from 5.5 to 6.6 percent). This was driven by rates of current marijuana use, which also remained steady between 2013 and 2012 (5.6 and 5.3 percent, respectively). However, the rate of current marijuana use in 2013 was higher than the rates in 2002 to 2011 (ranging from 3.9 to 4.8 percent roughly).

• Among adults of the age of 50 to 64 in California, the rate of current illicit drug use increased from 2.7 percent in 2002 to no less than 6.0 percent in 2013. For adults aged 50 to 54, the rate increased from 3.4 percent in the year 2002 to 7.9 percent in 2013. Among those aged 55 to 59, the rate of current illicit drug use increased from 1.9 percent in 2002 to 5.7 percent in 2013. Among those aged 60 to 64, the rate of current illicit drug use increased from 1.1 percent in 2003 and 2004 to 3.9 percent in the year of 2013.

Pointing Out Addiction in Parlier

There is no doubt now that addiction is a pretty serious problem in Parlier, but how does one pinpoint someone who is addicted to drugs and alcohol if that person is very hidden or secretive about it?  This is important.  Most people do not know what they are looking for when they are trying to spot an addict, and some do.  To start getting local addicts to go to treatment and to help potentially addicted family members, one needs to be able to notice and spot the signs and symptoms of addiction.  Listed below are just a few of these to give locals in Parlier a better idea of what to look for.

A true drug or alcohol addict is experiencing, is being, or will have:

• Over-active or under-active (depending on the drug they are taking)
• Repetitive speech patterns
• Dilated pupils, red eyes
• Excessive sniffing and runny nose (not attributable to a head cold)
• Looking pale or undernourished
• Clothes do not fit the same
• Weight loss
• Change in eating habits
• Unusual odors or body odor due to lack of personal hygiene because of drug use
• Missing work/school
• Work/school problems
• Missing important engagements
• Isolating/secretive about activities
• Disrupted sleep patterns
• Legal problems
• Relationship/marital problems
• Financial problems, (e.g. always needing money even if the individual has a job)
• Conversations dominated by using or drug/alcohol related topics and subjects
• Irritability/Argumentative
• Defensiveness
• Inability to deal with stress
• Loss of interest in activities/people that used to be part of their lives to a large degree
• Obnoxious
• Silly
• Confused easily
• Denial
• Rationalizing a lot.  Offering alibis, excuses, justifications, or other explanations for their using behavior and logic.
• Minimization of one’s problem. Admitting superficially to the problem but not admitting to the seriousness or full scope of the behavior or consequences of the addiction problem.
• Blaming other. Placing the blame for the behavior on someone else or some event in the person’s life.
• Diversionary tactics.  Changing the subject to avoid discussing the topic of addiction
• Loss of control over the amount and frequency of use
• Craving and compulsive using
• Continued use in the face of adverse consequences on the individual

These are the signs to look for in Parlier.  Addicted family members and loved ones in Parlier won’t always be so willing to admit that they have a drug or alcohol problem, but with the above signs, one can actually find out the truth behind these issues and make them noticed once and for all.  This is all done so that the addict can be convinced to go to rehab and to beat addiction for good.

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