Des Moines Drug Rehabilitation

Des Moines is the most populous city in Iowa and serves as the state’s capital with an estimated population of 207 thousand people. Its history traces back to 1843 when Captain James Allen managed the construction of a fort on the site where the Des Moines and Raccoon Rivers merge. He wanted to name it Fort Raccoon, but the US War Department instructed him to name it Fort Des Moines.

The fort was abandoned in 1846, however, settlers began occupying the fort and its nearby areas. Then in 1851, the Des Moines and Raccoon rivers rose to an unprecedented height destroying crops, houses and fencing. Although the fort was destroyed by this, it provided a clean slate for the city to build upon.

In late 1851, Des Moines was incorporated as a city and in 1857, the city charter was approved by voters.  The name Fort Des Moines was shortened to Des Moines and the state capital was moved from Iowa City to Des Moines. During the Civil War, the city’s growth was slowed greatly, but in 1866, a railroad link was completed which led to the city exploding in size and importance.

Since then, it has gone through industrial declines and rebirth periods.  Today, they are a member of ICLEI Local Governments for Sustainability USA and through this they have implemented “The Tomorrow Plan”, a regional plan focused on developing central Iowa in a sustainable fashion and to plan out the growth and resource consumption to manage the local population.

Des Moines Top Concern: Heroin and Prescription Drug Abuse

Although progress is being made in Des Moines to stop drug dealers and prevent further drug addiction from occurring, there is still a lot of work to be done. Even though meth lab seizures are increasing, it is not stopping meth use. In fact, meth use is also up throughout the entire state of Iowa.

The two biggest concerns right now though are heroin and prescription drug abuse. Both of these are fast growing drugs among addicts in the city and throughout the state of Iowa.


Heroin abuse is nothing new to the world; it has been a problem for the entire country since it was invented in 1874 and was marketed as a non-addictive solution to the morphine addiction that was devastating the US. Since then, it has been one of the biggest problems in drug addiction because of its deadly effects on the body and mind of those that abuse it.

As heroin abuse is rising in Des Moines, communities and police are concerned over the increase in overdose that comes whenever abuse of the drug increases in an area.

Prescription Drugs:

One of the fastest growing areas of substance abuse in Des Moines involves the use of prescription drugs. It is also believed that this is a factor in the increase in heroin abuse as many prescription painkillers are opiates and opioids which are very similar to heroin. When the drug abuser runs out of painkillers, he may turn to street heroin as an alternative.

Prescription drug abuse is not limited to only those people buying the drugs off the street or by lying to their doctors to get the drugs. Many people are introduced to the drug by finding it in their house, belonging to a parent or sibling.

Meth Use Up while Meth Labs Down:

The number of meth labs in Iowa is decreasing, although this sounds like good news, after all less labs should mean less drugs, this is unfortunately not the case. Meth use is actually increasing in in Des Moines and throughout the state of Iowa.

The reason for this is that there is a lot more meth coming in from other areas now. One such source is “Ice”, a Mexican sourced crystal meth that is coming in to fill the vacuum created by shut down meth labs. This source is harder to stop for Iowa drug enforcement than locally made meth because it is made in Mexico. Meth made right there in the state of Iowa is easier to shut down.

So far this year, 64,000 grams of meth has been seized by Iowa law enforcement, which is the largest amount in ten years. This means that the amount being smuggled into the state is increasing as well. Dale Woolery, associate director of the ODCP said “Iowan’s demand for methamphetamine, that appetite, has never dropped in Iowa,” and police from neighboring cities also agree that the increase of meth use is not just limited to Des Moines.

Having less meth labs though is still good news on another front; meth labs cause more damage than just the meth they produce. They hurt the environment and the people who live near them as well. The labs produce dangerous chemical waste that is also flammable and explosive. For every pound of meth produced, an alarming six pounds of this waste is created. Even months after a lab has been closed down the chemical residue still remains there. The building becomes unusable as the chemicals used can easily spread through the walls, carpets, curtains and furniture of the site.

Des Moines Rehab:

There are approximately 30 drug rehab centers in Des Moines available to people who are looking to overcome their addiction to drugs or alcohol. Of these, five of them offer inpatient care programs while the rest specialize in outpatient care.

If you are helping look for a rehab center for a loved one who is dealing with addiction, the first step in finding one would be to call and check to make sure the center you are considering is right for them. Check to see how effective their program is, what results do they get? If your loved one is in need of a special program such as for pregnant or postpartum women or for people who are seeking to handle DUI or DWI charges, find out what programs they have available. Not all locations have these programs, so it is important to ask in advance.

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