Located in southwest Idaho approximately 10 miles from Boise is the city of Meridian. Lying in the center of a flat plain in the north central part of Treasure Valley, Meridian is the 3rd largest city in Idaho behind Boise and Nampa. It’s also the state’s fastest growing city, boasting an 81.5 percent increase in its population since the year 2000. Named because of its location on an official meridian of the Public Land Survey System of the United States, the arid region was turned into a productive farming community by early settlers.
In the desperate days of the Great Depression, Meridian lifted the economic burden most residents felt by establishing a cooperative creamery which began its operation in 1929. Providing income to those who were members of the cooperative, its operation enabled many to provide food for their families.
But today the area is actually the home of Idaho State Police’s headquarters where the state police academy is housed. All officers statewide attend mandatory basic training at the facility.
Meridian, Idaho is a city that experience four distinct seasons, with dry summer heat, light snow fall in the winter, and generally temperate spring and fall weather. But temperance is becoming tested for the citizens of Meridian when it comes to the illegal use of drugs.
The Drug Abuse Problem in Meridian
Despite the presence of the state police headquarters in the city, Meridian’s citizens are experiencing the vice of substance abuse in its otherwise quiet American town.
Below is a list of the most prevalent drugs being trafficked and used in the region.
Alcohol has been reported to be the most commonly abused legal substance across the nation. Up to 50 percent of all incidents reported in our country had alcohol listed as the primary substance. This statistic holds true for the state of Idaho, however the percentages of alcohol abuse in the city of Meridian are slightly higher than the state’s average.
According to available reports, marijuana is the most commonly cited illicit drug among treatment admissions in the state, and in Meridian treatment admissions for marijuana usage are increasing. The largest demographic shown to be seeking treatment for marijuana use in the city is the 18-25-year-old bracket, though 26+-year-olds run a close second.
Second only to marijuana, stimulants are a big part of Meridian’s drug culture. This category of drugs includes cocaine, amphetamines, methamphetamines, as well as others. Opposite to a depressant, a stimulant increases the electrical activity of the nervous system, increases heart rate and blood pressure. This causes a person to be more alert, have prolonged periods of activity, and can improve mood and increase confidence. But as with any drug these effects are artificially stimulated at a very dear cost to the user.
As with other major cities across the country, cocaine use in Meridian has decreased with the rise in methamphetamine use. Methamphetamine use has been spreading across the country over the past several years, and Idaho has been feeling the effects of this movement. A highly addictive substance, methamphetamine is spreading so quickly because of its availability, ease of use, and the ability to manufacture it from ordinary household products.
Users of methamphetamine can have some of the more violent drug reactions in comparison to others. When taken in large doses the effects can be excitement and anxiety, aggressive behavior, extreme irritability, and even hallucinations and paranoia.
Opiates and Prescription Drugs:
Prescription drug abuse is a problem of increasing proportions in the United States currently, and the problem affects citizens of all ages. Unfortunately, research has also shown prescription medications to be the drugs of choice for 12 to 13 year olds—even more so than illegal street drugs (with the exception of marijuana). According to a teen survey released by the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse, almost nine million 12-17-year-olds admitted they can get their hands on these types of drugs within a day, and 5 million report it only takes one hour to get them. This trend is reflected in Meridian though not on as large a scale as some of the larger cities.
Originally developed by the medical community to combat pain, these drugs can be taken orally, or crushed and snorted or injected. Other common prescription drugs abused in the city are: Ritalin, Dexedrine, OxyContin, Darvon, Vicodin, and Valium.
Not only are these drugs dangerous in their own right, it has been stated by drug treatment officials that prescription drug abuse tends to lead to heroin use because heroin is an opiate that is much less expensive to procure.
Although heroin usage in Meridian is increasing, it is not widespread, accounting for only about 1 percent of all drug arrests in Idaho. But Idaho State Police do report a significant increase in the amount of heroin arrests. From 2011 to 2012 there was a 60 percent jump in the numbers of arrests for heroin. The average age of those arrested was between 27 and 28, which is a younger age bracket than the previous year when the average age of those arrested was older than 30.
Heroin has become such a problem in the city of Meridian, that a recent task force was formed in January of 2014 to combat heroin trafficking in the city.
Find Rehabilitation Facilities in Meridian
There are a wide range of treatment facilities in Meridian designed to treat all types of drug and substance abuse issues. It is no longer a matter of having money in order to get the proper help to treat an addiction, but a matter of finding the right facility or program. There are government-funded free or no-cost programs in the city and outlying areas that anyone can avail themselves of. Likewise, there are high-end programs that cost thousands of dollars and have every type of amenity available to the resident patient.
The length of time a person has been addicted, as well as the substance they are addicted to have everything to do with the type of treatment program that will bring success. The emotional state of the person and his or her physical health must also be taken into consideration. The more serious nature of the drug they are addicted to, the more medical support they will need in order to get through the withdrawal phase of coming off the drug. A person who has become dependent on a substance must always have the appropriate medical and physical support when going through the detoxification phase.
The two main phases of treating addiction are detoxification and lifestyle management. It is difficult to achieve full success in getting, and keeping, a person off of drugs unless both phases are addressed. A person becomes addicted for a reason. Something drives the person to the drug—whether physical or emotional, pain or stress. If the original reason for taking the substance is not addressed, the person will relapse.
The first step is to identify the aspects of a person’s particular addiction that must be addressed, as laid out above, and then search the listings for Meridian’s rehab centers. You’ll find exactly what you or your loved one needs.