Substance Abuse Treatment in Austin
- 1 Substance Abuse Treatment in Austin
- 2 Addiction Treatment in Austin, Texas
- 3 Drug Addiction in Austin, Texas: A Generational Story
- 4 The Need for Methamphetamine Treatment in Austin
- 5 A Proven Need: Heroin Detox in Austin, TX
- 6 Fentanyl Detox Austin and the Rising Opioid Crisis
- 7 Harm-Reduction Measures in Austin Texas: A Controversial Approach
- 8 Finding Substance Abuse Recovery in the Austin Community
- 9 Living Options After Substance Abuse Treatment in Austin, TX
- 10 AA in Austin and 12 Step Alternatives in Texas
- 11 Find Addiction Rehabs in Austin Now!
The city of Austin, TX, has a long history that’s flashed forward through several different eras, making the Texas capital rich in culture. With its once low cost of living, close proximity to many natural wonders, large hippie population (that’s now dwindling), and laid-back attitude, it’s not hard to believe that Austin, TX is also referred to as “The Live Music Capital of The World.” Few know that addiction treatment centers Austin are currently rising in demand, and form a centerpiece of the city’s needs heading into the future.
Currently, Austin is shaping to be one of the largest tech cities in the world. However, Austinites are still proud of their reputation as a vibrant community with an active social life — whether they’re watching a Longhorns game, attending art events at one of the local galleries, or enjoying music festivals like South By Southwest every year. And if you’ve ever visited this town, you know how friendly everyone can be. So why would anyone want to leave?
The rapidly increasing population would point to the fact that not many people are leaving, but there are plenty of newcomers transplanting to Austin for one reason or another. The thriving art and music scene has been a draw recently, and the University of Texas employs many people in the city. Still, the tech business has defined Austin as we currently know it.
The Emerging Needs for Behavioral Health Services in Austin, TX
This “peace and love town,” a stark contrast to the ruggedness of the rest of the Lonestar State, Austin has morphed into more of a progressive, trendy, neo-hipster city. Several larger tech firms like Adobe and SalesForce call Austin home, pushing it forward into more of a Silicon Valley-type city, slowly drifting away from the tie-dyed Texas hippie mecca that evolved in the 1970s.
While you can still see a watermark of that culture left on the city, Austin is climbing higher on the social rung. It wasn’t always like this, especially during the pre-hippie years of the early 1900s. Things were much slower then, and the liberal environment that transplants like Willie Nelson left on the city still left a mark that requires a proactive approach to substance abuse.
Addiction Treatment in Austin, Texas
Many people find themselves struggling with some drug use problems, but those who live in Austin have access to several different types of rehab programs that help both alcoholics and addicts.
Whether your goal is long-term sobriety or just short-term assistance while getting back on track, there are many reasons to consider moving to Austin to start fresh. Here we’ll explore the history of substance abuse in Austin and what makes it an ideal place for treatment.
Drug Addiction in Austin, Texas: A Generational Story
While Austin was founded in 1839, the presence of Native Americans had already been felt in the region before settlers arrived. Evidence suggests these early inhabitants used psychoactive plants like peyote, mescal, and other hallucination-inducing compounds. This could be perhaps the first documented evidence of drug abuse in Austin.
Before the 1970s, Austin was still a slow-paced Texas town bordering the high deserts of West Texas and the rich greenery of Central Texas. Although always a moderately-sized city, primarily thanks to the University of Texas and other colleges in the area, Austin had always been relatively conservative.
The city had always been known for its music and was a breeding ground for the Spanish-influenced “country-western” horn and pick-heavy style of music, a stark contrast from the Nashville sound that was popular around that time. Several Tennessee musicians left the Nashville area after being shunned by the rhinestone, star-studded glitz, and glamor of Nashville. They settled in West Texas, bringing the free-spirited, buzz chasing life you usually wouldn’t find in the area.
A perfect storm ensued just as high-grade marijuana and cocaine began flooding the Rio-Grande area, making West Texas a hub for drug trafficking that still hasn’t met its end. Unfortunately, it never has shown signs of slowing and still doesn’t.
Austin is considered a High-Intensity Drug Trafficking Area, meaning a large amount of the narcotics in the area are smuggled in from Mexican drug cartels. The pot trade would eventually give way to more insidious products, plaguing Austin with challenges it continues to deal with now.
The Need for Methamphetamine Treatment in Austin
In the 1970s and 80s, most of the meth produced was crafted using a variety known as P2P, using phenyl-2-propanone and producing much larger yields of a purer brand of “ice.” Austin was a hotbed for this brand of meth, driven by the hippie and biker community that had a foothold in the community.
Law enforcement measures eventually culled much of the problem, leading to a methamphetamine “remission” throughout the late 90s and early 2000s. However, a familiar demon is back with a vengeance in the Austin area, causing levels of overdose and addiction like the area has never experienced.
Purity levels of this meth are even higher than the batches circulating in the 70s – up to 98% in some instances. Because of the adverse effects, the ingredients this particular version of meth has on the brain, accompanying mental health disorders are a regular occurrence.
Besides the mental health/substance abuse combo meth has pounded the city, heroin trends in Austin have followed the rest of the nation, leaving rising death tolls in its wake.
A Proven Need: Heroin Detox in Austin, TX
Like the rest of the country, heroin abuse has noticeably continued its steady climb, with addiction and overdose numbers doubling and tripling in the last decade. Austin has experienced more significant challenges with heroin than other West Texas cities and Southwest United States metro areas like Phoenix and Albuquerque.
In the past, most cities west of the Mississippi river, including Dallas and Austin, experienced challenges with black tar heroin produced in Mexico. Although deadly, this less-potent, more crudely made version didn’t have nearly as many overdose deaths as the potent Asian and South American heroin available on the East Coast.
While the black-tar version continues to be the brand of choice for cities in the Southwest United States and beyond, and even in Dallas, Austin has dealt with the dead powdered version of the drug, which now consists of mostly fentanyl. In fact, at the time of publishing this article, May 2022, Austin, Texas, is currently experiencing unprecedented numbers of opioid overdose deaths, all of which point to fentanyl.
Fentanyl Detox Austin and the Rising Opioid Crisis
One hundred seventy drug overdoses were reported in Austin in 2021. With over seven months left to the year, the city is already sitting at around 100, well over half of last year’s number.
This is a culmination of many overdoses, with record years achieved each year since 2018. The city recently filed for an emergency $3 million in funds to combat the area’s current overdose death spike. It recently paid out $50,000 to two separate groups to purchase fentanyl test trips in the community. In practice known as harm-reduction, measures are taken to mitigate the number of deaths, taking a completely different stance than more conservative areas, which has caused tension in the Texas political world.
Harm-Reduction Measures in Austin Texas: A Controversial Approach
In a push made by President Joe Biden, many liberal cities are providing hand-out packages with various drug supplies, including those to test, use, and battle overdose. Austin, Texas, is beginning to follow suit, pleasuring other Texas cities to hop onboard, causing significant controversy in the state.
These packs include syringes, glass pipes, alcohol pads, fentanyl test kits, and Narcan. Many argue that “harm-reduction” turns a blind eye to substance abuse, but the problem runs deeper than simple bi-partisan head-butting in Texas.
In Texas, the old law still runs the state with an iron fist, and things like glass pipes and misuse of insulin syringes are still met with arrest and even prison time. Other parts of the country have steadily shifted their approach, taking similar harm-reduction stances on substance abuse or, at the very least, offering treatment in exchange for simple possession of narcotics or felony paraphernalia.
While the battle still rages on fringe topics, Austin makes headway in the category of substance abuse and mental health treatment, making it a suitable getaway for transients seeking recovery temporarily and even transplants making a permanent move.
Finding Substance Abuse Recovery in the Austin Community
A big part of successfully recovering has a solid support network. There are many ways to get support when you need it most, including therapy sessions and group meetings.
Many rehab centers offer outpatient care, meaning patients may go straight from their homes to classes or counseling sessions, making treatment feasible if you work or attend one of the many universities in Austin.
This gives them more freedom than staying in a facility for 30 days or more, although many inpatient options exist in Austin with fantastic dual-diagnosis and other mental health programs. You shouldn’t feel pressured to commit before talking to others about their experiences.
It helps to talk things over first with friends and loved ones, even though they probably won’t be able to give you honest advice. Ultimately, only you can decide which approach works best for you.
Using Find Addiction Rehab’s comprehensive search database offers nearly every option for treatment and support programs in the area. Their powerful search filters allow you to craft a tailor-made inquiry, complete with supporting articles and other pertinent information regarding substance abuse.
Living Options After Substance Abuse Treatment in Austin, TX
If you choose to move to Austin, you should consider housing. Finding affordable accommodations isn’t easy anywhere, especially in larger cities, and Austin does boast the highest cost of living in all of Texas.
Depending on your situation, you could save money by choosing shared housing instead of paying for individual rooms. There are also halfway houses available for individuals exiting treatment, which can help place you into a more permanent location, allowing you to get o your feet.
AA in Austin and 12 Step Alternatives in Texas
The area is rife with plenty of support groups like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) or Narcotics Anonymous (NA). Believe it or not, Austin, TX, is home to a large community of out-of-towners seeking to recover, and the support group scene is thriving, giving you dozens of options for alternative meet-ups.
You don’t have to worry about finding transportation once you arrive in Austin. Public transit is excellent throughout the entire metropolitan area, offering everything from bus routes to light rail lines. However, if you plan to spend much time outside the downtown district, you should take advantage of car rentals available around the city. Taxis are also widely used within the city limits.
In a city like Austin, packed with thriving professional cultures of many varieties, gainful employment won’t be a problem after treatment. Additionally, support groups also lend another pillar required for long-term success.
Find Addiction Rehabs in Austin Now!
Austin might be a great option if you’re thinking about treatment and have a tech-focused, arts, or musical background. Additionally, simple music fans and outdoor enthusiasts might find it a great temporary home for inpatient rehab before heading back to your stomping grounds.
Regardless, Find Addiction Rehabs is a great starting point, giving you all the tools you need to build a successful plan for treatment. Check out FAR’s Austin city page for more information about all of Austin’s recovery options and other highlights.
Charles F. has been an active part of the Florida recovery community for over 5 years. He began as a behavioral health technician at an addiction treatment facility in Ocala, Florida and has since begun training as a Licensed Addiction and Chemical Dependency counselor in Boca Raton. Charles’ passion involves the promotion of recovery and helping spread the hope of recovery to as many readers as possible!