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Monday, September 26, 2011

Chicago Area Addicts: Whites, Suburban, Upper Middle Class


The City of Chicago has long been under siege by street drugs, not too dissimilar than most major cities in America with high poverty. However, as prescription drugs become more acceptable for many people to take because of the misconception that they are somehow safer than street drugs; many upper class suburban Americans have began abusing prescription drugs - especially in the Chicago area. People who are hooked on prescription medicines, like oxycodone and Xanax, will often substitute heroin if they run out of their prescription early; Chicago is an epicenter for the heroin trade in America, but, as more people move to the suburbs street drugs like heroin will and have followed.

Experts say that drug addicts who are white, suburban, and upper-middle class are becoming more and more common. The number of older adults looking for pain relief as well as teens who just want to get high is growing, the Chicago Tribune reports. What's more, you don't have to go to a doctor to acquire prescription drugs anymore since street gangs are being supplied by drug cartels with such drugs, according to Jack Riley of the Drug Enforcement Administration’s Chicago Division; there is an incentive for cartels who deal with prescription drugs considering that prescription drugs are typically sold for more than street drugs making them a more lucrative venture.

Jake Epperly, the owner of a recovery center in the Chicago area, made a valid point about peoples' ability to transition from so-called "safe" prescription medicines to heroin. He points out that people no longer have to inject heroin, they can smoke or snort the drug because of an influx of Mexican black tar heroin, a gummy substance not to dissimilar from hashish. In the past Chicago heroin was typically in white powder form, known as China White, a form of the drug that is most commonly injected.

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