When you or a loved one is considering addiction treatment, it may seem expensive and difficult to manage. Depending on the length of the treatment program and the type of facility, it may cost thousands of dollars to get through the entire program.
Although addiction treatment seems expensive, the cost of addiction is much higher than just the amount you or your loved one pays for the substance.
Substance abuse is risky to human health. Although the exact impact on the body may vary slightly between substances, the physical body will develop health concerns that require medical attention.
The potential health concerns that may arise include:
- Irregular heart beat
- Heart attacks
- Developing HIV or AIDS
- Organ damage or failure
- Complications during pregnancy
Damage to the internal organs can vary based on the substance. For example, alcohol may cause damage to the liver, but cocaine can cause heart attacks and heart failure. According to Healthy People, roughly 1/4 of newly reported cases of HIV and AIDS are related to injection-based drug abuse.
Going to the emergency room due to an overdose is another potential risk associated with substance abuse. Emergency care can easily cost thousands of dollars if you or your loved one overdoses on drugs or alcohol.
The healthcare costs of substance abuse add up quickly and will surpass the expense of obtaining addiction treatment and working on recovery. When you or your loved one stop abusing drugs or alcohol, the health risks will gradually reduce and the expense of seeking medical attention will reduce.
Lost productivity is another potential expense that adds up quickly when you or your loved one are abusing drugs or alcohol. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration,
lost productivity in the workplace costs employers roughly $276 billion per year.
The productivity costs are not solely impacting your employer or the employer of your loved one. It is also directly impacting the life of the individual using a substance as well as family members.
When an individual is unproductive at work, it is more likely that he or she will be fired from that job. The loss of a job and the time spent looking for a new position can result in a loss of thousands of dollars.
It takes time to find a new position, especially after being fired from a previous job. Depending on the amount of time spent in the search for a new job, it may result in several months of lost income. That means a few thousand dollars for every time you or your loved one is fired from a job.
Loss of Life
Substance abuse is not only likely to add up financially, but it can result in death. According to Healthy People, almost half of the arrests that take place in the United States are related to substance abuse, including cases of homicide and assault. Healthy People reports that 18 percent of fatal car accidents also result from substance abuse.
The cost of substance abuse is not limited to the expense of buying drugs or alcohol. It also results in high-cost medical care, the loss of money when you or your loved one loses a job and the higher risk of fatal accidents. The cost of addiction treatment is significantly lower than the cost of losing a life.