The 2015-2016 National Survey on Drug Use and Health revealed that use and abuse of substances is a problem in every state, and Nebraska is no exception. Misuse of alcohol is particularly problematic, closely followed by methamphetamine abuse. Healthcare professionals, lawmakers and social services organizations have banded together to create a variety of laws, prevention programs and treatment opportunities to combat the problem.
Nebraska Substance Abuse Statistics
The National Survey on Drug Use and Health offers an in-depth look at the issues facing Americans, from the rate of drug and alcohol use nationwide to specific challenges in each state.
Nebraska statistics include the following information:
- The rate of illegal drug use (including marijuana) among those over the age of 18 in the month preceding the survey was 8.80 percent. This figure represents approximately 123,000 adults.
- Nebraskans over the age of 18 report using cocaine at a rate of 1.49 percent, or approximately 21,000 people.
- Meth continues to present a problem in Nebraska, second only to alcohol abuse. The number of Nebraska residents seeking treatment for misuse of meth was higher in 2015 than in any other year since 2000, and nearly 93 percent of 2016 drug-related prosecutions were related to meth.
Alcohol Abuse In Nebraska
Binge drinking is the most pressing substance use disorder in Nebraska. One news article stated bluntly, “Nebraska is America’s 9th drunkest state.”
Nebraska has higher rates of binge drinking compared to the national average. Adults in Nebraska report binge drinking in the past month at a rate of 31.28 percent, which is approximately 438,000 residents of the state. 26.54 percent of adults across the U.S. report this behavior.
Approximately 70 percent of treatment center admissions in Nebraska are due to alcohol use disorders.
Each year, over 300 Nebraska residents die and 4,000 are hospitalized as a result of alcohol. In 2016, Nebraska had 7,311 arrests related to driving under the influence. That same year, 1,708 alcohol-related crashes were reported, and 37.2 percent of all crash fatalities were due to alcohol impairment.
In 2016, expenses from alcohol-related car accidents topped $174,130,200.
Alcohol-related health conditions and death due to alcohol use disproportionately affect Nebraska’s Native American population. A state epidemiological profile found that the rate of alcohol-related deaths among Native Americans was six times higher than other groups, and the rate of death due to chronic liver disease among Native Americans was 14 times higher than other populations.
Addiction Awareness Campaigns In Nebraska
While prevention and treatment of all sorts of substance use disorders are available in Nebraska, three issues have been given top priority. State lawmakers and healthcare professionals are committed to the national fight against opioid abuse, and there is a push to address the high rate of alcohol abuse among state residents. In addition, legislators are working to prevent the manufacture and use of methamphetamines.
Nebraska is making progress in reducing excessive opioid prescriptions, and strict laws are partially responsible. In early 2018, a package of opioid prevention measures was signed into law.
Among other things, this legislation puts the following requirements into effect:
- A seven-day limit on opioid prescriptions for patients under the age of 19
- A requirement for physicians to counsel patients before writing prescriptions for opioid medications
- A change in pharmacy procedures that requires patients to show photo ID before picking up opioid prescriptions
Small meth labs are increasingly uncommon since the passage of federal regulations to restrict the sale of key ingredient pseudoephedrine. In 2005, Nebraska State Police identified and closed 252 meth labs. In 2016, they only found three. Unfortunately, the push to prevent local manufacture of methamphetamine has not impacted use. Meth is still imported in large quantities from northern Mexico.
Choosing The Right Nebraska Addiction Treatment Center
Nebraska offers many addiction treatment programs to meet the needs of diverse populations.
Questions to ask before selecting an addiction treatment center include:
- What types of therapies are offered in the program?
- Does the center have appropriate licenses and accreditations?
- Does the program focus on the needs of a particular demographic?
- What is the total cost of the program?
- Is financial aid available?
- What is the length of the program?
A full understanding of the program’s features makes it possible to select an option that meets patients’ specific needs.
Nebraska Addiction Treatment Programs
Recovering from an alcohol use disorder or addiction to other substances typically requires professional addiction treatment from an experienced provider. Once a provider has been selected, the first step in most treatment plans is to determine where patients should begin on the continuum of care. Some possibilities include the following:
Nebraska Intervention Services
Individuals experiencing active addiction are not always prepared to help themselves. Family members and friends may be hopeful that their loved one will eventually choose to seek treatment, but it is dangerous to wait for a decision that may never come. Nebraska intervention services provide training and support to families who are ready to have difficult conversations with loved ones who are struggling with drug and alcohol abuse.
High-quality addiction treatment programs rely on individual assessments to determine how best to manage the substance use disorder. The results of these assessments are used to customize treatment plans that may include some or all of the services in the continuum of care.
Nebraska Drug and Alcohol Detox
Many people experiencing active addiction must begin treatment with a detox program. These are typically inpatient facilities so the detox process can be supervised round the clock by medical professionals.
Getting through withdrawal symptoms can be very uncomfortable, and in some cases, it can become deadly. Nebraska drug and alcohol detox centers offer assistance in treating the symptoms of withdrawal and provide medical intervention as needed.
Nebraska Inpatient Drug Rehab
Once any physical dependence on a substance has been addressed, the next step is to treat the psychological, emotional and behavioral factors that underlie the substance use disorder. High-quality Nebraska residential addiction treatment facilities offer a variety of therapies.
The benefits of inpatient addiction treatment over outpatient options include the following:
- Routine and structure
- 24/7 drug-free environment
- Removal from places and events that trigger cravings
- Round-the-clock support from trained professionals
- Access to quality nutrition and physical activity
Nebraska Outpatient Addiction Treatment
Though some patients choose outpatient addiction treatment from the start, most rely on such programs to provide ongoing support after completing a Nebraska inpatient drug rehab program.
In an outpatient program, those in recovery are able to return home or to a sober living home each night, but during the day they continue to participate in programs and therapies that are similar to the inpatient experience. This step can be critical for those returning to their original home environments, as these environments can trigger a relapse.
Nebraska Aftercare And Alumni Services
Successful completion of an addiction treatment program is a momentous accomplishment. However, long-term recovery is an ongoing process. Nebraska offers a variety of aftercare and alumni services that keep former patients connected to the recovery community. These programs ensure lifetime support for those who are no longer suffering from active addiction, ensuring they have the tools necessary to prevent a relapse.
Specialized Addiction Treatment Programs
The use of medication during the treatment of substance use disorders may extend beyond the detox phase. Patients who participate in medication-assisted treatment participate in a customized therapy program in addition to receiving medications proven to help support recovery. Studies show that in some cases, the use of medication in addition to tailored therapy can help sustain recovery long-term.
Treatment For Co-occurring Disorders
A co-occurring disorder is when a substance use disorder is accompanied by mental illness. Many individuals experiencing active addiction experience simultaneous mental health conditions that also require treatment. Common examples include depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, bipolar disorder and eating disorders, all of which may exacerbate addiction issues. Patients diagnosed with co-occurring disorders require integrated treatment plans that address all of their needs.
Gender-Specific Therapy Groups
Group therapy is a staple of substance use disorder treatment, and in many cases, the groups include both men and women. However, this type of setting isn’t right for every patient. Many treatment centers offer male-only and female-only group therapy to ensure that participants are comfortable exploring their feelings during the sessions.
Addiction Treatment Therapies
Many types of therapy are available to treat substance use disorders. Specific programs in Nebraska may limit their focus to certain solutions, so it is important to gather information about possible treatment plans when determining which treatment center best fits a patient’s needs.
Common therapies include the following:
This group of therapies operates under the philosophy that behaviors are learned, and therefore they can be changed. Through the use of techniques such as cognitive-behavioral therapy, dialectical behavior therapy and motivational interviewing, people suffering from addiction can learn to reduce unhealthy and self-destructive behaviors.
A variety of complementary therapies have been shown to support and sustain recovery efforts. Examples include yoga, meditation, acupuncture, equine therapy and journaling.
One-on-one counseling is an opportunity for patients to collaborate with a professional who specializes in recovering from addiction. During these sessions, counselor and patient discuss issues that stand in the way of achieving goals, as well as the best way to overcome them.
Sometimes, receiving support from peers in a professionally guided session can offer insight that is not available in a one-on-one setting. Many programs incorporate group counseling and support groups in treating substance use disorders.
The impact of substance use disorders is not limited to those who suffer from active addiction. Friends and family members also experience the effects of their loved one’s behavior. Family therapy is designed to support those around the primary patient, and it may help to resolve interpersonal rifts that have developed.
Nutrition Education and Exercise
Healthy eating and physical activity are proven mood elevators, and related therapies can transform patients’ physical and mental health.
Everyone faces stress at one time or another. Creating healthy habits for coping is critical for long-term recovery.
Battling addiction leaves little time for learning basic life skills like finding and keeping a job and managing finances. High-quality addiction treatment programs ensure patients are prepared with the skills they need for long-term success.
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Paying For Addiction Treatment In Nebraska
Many patients are concerned about the expense of drug rehab. Fortunately, most health insurance plans pay some of the bills related to the treatment of a substance use disorder.
Plans that operate in Nebraska and cover a portion of inpatient drug and alcohol treatment may include United Healthcare, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nebraska and Humana. Medicaid may also be an option for those suffering from addiction.
Most treatment centers offer additional programs to assist with paying any remaining out-of-pocket expense. These may include sliding-scale fee structures, grants and scholarships. Finally, a majority of treatment facilities offer payment plans.
Length Of Treatment
Nebraska drug rehab programs vary in length, depending on the treatment methods used. While some are short-term, lasting a month or less, others can extend for a year or more. Aftercare and alumni services may last a lifetime. The final length of an individual patients’ participation depends on the type of program and the individual’s treatment needs.
Traveling For Treatment
It is common for patients to travel for drug and alcohol treatment, and many Nebraska residents participate in programs outside of their home cities. In some cases, the most appropriate treatment center is in a different state. By participating in treatment away from home, patients have an opportunity to leave old habits, acquaintances and neighborhoods behind. Traveling for treatment means a fresh start, and it is easier to concentrate on recovery without any distractions.
Addiction Campuses offers effective, compassionate treatment in several states across the country, and we can help people find the care they need—wherever they are.
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration—State Reports From the 2016 NSDUH
- Omaha World-Herald—As nation faces opioid epidemic, in Nebraska and Iowa, meth is still the ‘No. 1 threat’
- Nebraska Department of Transportation—Alcohol-Impaired Driving