Addiction Treatment Services San Antonio

San Antonio is located on the far western side of Texas.  Inhabited for thousands of years by indigenous people, San Antonio’s first European settlements were established in 1718 by the Spanish.

The city became the center of Spanish military power in Texas and later became part of Mexico. After the Mexican War, San Antonio finally became part of the state of Texas in 1845.

San Antonio is considered a metropolitan city and lies in the heart of a region known as the Texas Triangle. The triangle encompasses Austin, Dallas, and Houston, and along with San Antonio, these locations make up the four largest metro areas in the state. Substance abuse treatment in San Antonio is a pressing need, and only growing amid the current opioid epidemic.

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This Texas city has been well-known for being in the top 10 drug use cities in the United States and is number one in Texas’s southern and western regions. Three drugs have seen spikes in use and are causing significant challenges for medical and law enforcement personnel in the area: Marijuana, methamphetamine, and heroin.

The following article highlights San Antonio’s challenges regarding substance abuse and what they’re doing to press forward. If you’re thinking of attending substance abuse treatment in San Antonio, you’ll find out why the city is one of the best places to begin recovery.

A San Antonio Substance Abuse History

The Texas Department of Public Safety reports that from 2000 to 2016, there were more than 34,000 drug-related arrests in Bexar County alone. The majority of those arrests were for the possession or sale of marijuana.

San Antonio’s history of narcotics goes back much further. The following section highlights significant periods in history throughout the city’s battle with substance abuse.

Marijuana Addiction in San Antonio

Marijuana Addiction in the Early Development of San Antonio

During the early 20th century, marijuana was considered a “cheap substitute” for opium and heroin by many addicts. In 1903, Mayor Charles S. O’Neill banned the sale of opium pipes and cocaine vials after a series of reports about addiction among Mexican immigrants. According to the Texas State Historical Association, O’Neill claimed that “the use of these drugs leads to insanity and crime.”

It was even promoted by Harry J. Anslinger, the first commissioner of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics (FBN), who used scare tactics to demonize marijuana users. Anslinger was the voice behind the black and white film “Reefer Madness,” a propaganda piece put together to deflect public interest in marijuana.

According to San Antonio Express-News columnist Gilbert Garcia, Anslinger said that marijuana “can cause insanity if used continuously or excessively.” Garcia also reported that Anslinger even called marijuana “the most violent narcotic known to man.”

Anslinger was also famously quoted saying that marijuana turned humans into blood-thirsty killers. After a series of murders in the area, Anslinger named marijuana the driving force behind the killer’s motive.

In 1915, El Paso, Texas, passed its first state law criminalizing marijuana possession — making it illegal to have any amount of cannabis on your person or in your home. El Paso was the first town in the United States to pass criminal legislation against marijuana.

In the 1920s, Mexican immigrants brought marijuana into Texas from Mexico, where it had been used for centuries by native peoples. In 1928, Texas became one of the first states to prohibit marijuana cultivation and sales under the Liquor Control Act (Chapter 902).

In 1927, Texas Gov. Miriam A. Ferguson signed into law an amendment that made possession or transfer of less than an ounce punishable by six months imprisonment or a $500 fine; possession or transfer of more than one ounce was punishable by up to two years imprisonment or $2,000 fine; distribution charges were even more severe.

Meth Addiction Treatment Needed in San Antonio, TX

Methamphetamine is one of the most popular drugs in San Antonio. For over a decade, the city has been plagued by meth addiction, with high use rates among teenagers and young adults.

More arrests are made for methamphetamine possession than any other drug — nearly 2,500 per year. Methamphetamine accounts for about 50 percent of all drug-related arrests in Bexar County alone.

According to reports from 2010 by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), San Antonio has become a drug distribution hub due to its proximity to Mexico, where most illegal drugs enter the country before being distributed across America.

The DEA found that one-third of all methamphetamines in America is funneled through San Antonio; these meth labs are often run by Mexican drug cartels or gangs who use them for illegal distribution purposes on both sides of the border.

Heroin Treatment for San Antonio: A Growing Concern

Heroin Treatment for San Antonio

San Antonio also has a heroin problem that isn’t as well-known as its meth problem but is still severe. Like meth, heroin abuse is rising among teens and young adults in San Antonio.

The number of San Antonio residents battling opioid painkiller abuse disorder has declined from its once huge numbers, but heroin use has increased. Like many other areas of the country, stiffer regulation against painkillers and the shutdown of pill mills led to many users scrambling for heroin.

A 2013 survey suggests that 40,000 San Antonio residents tried heroin at some point. These figures have climbed, and while current numbers don’t reveal as big of a heroin problem as the rest of the country, the increases in use continue to rise steadily.

Finding Addiction Treatment Services in San Antonio, TX

Project HOPE is an outreach program for people battling substance abuse. The goal of Project HOPE is to assist in overcoming addiction by promoting recovery through education and prevention.

The center provides a safe place where individuals can receive counseling, education, and referrals to community resources. Project HOPE also offers community education programs on addiction awareness, prevention, and intervention.

The following services are offered at Project HOPE:

Outreach Programs

Project HOPE provides outreach services throughout Bexar County, including high schools, colleges, churches, and other community settings. Outreach services include presentations on the dangers of drug abuse and information on available resources in San Antonio, including treatment options and support groups.

Substance Abuse Prevention Program

Project HOPE offers several prevention programs ranging from school-based preventative education programs for children ages 5-12 years old to community-based programs for teens 13 -18 years old. The program provides information about substance abuse prevention and how it affects our community. This includes lectures on the risk factors associated with drug use, such as peer pressure, violence, and bullying.

Project HOPE offers free and confidential services, including:

  • 24-hour crisis intervention and referral
  • Telephone counseling program
  • Group therapy sessions
  • Family support groups
  • Individual counseling sessions

Finding Residential Addiction Treatment Facilities in San Antonio

San Antonio has several treatment facilities available to those who need help battling their addiction. Some of these programs offer inpatient treatment, while others provide outpatient services or both options.

These facilities provide clients with everything they need, including counseling, medications, and other forms of therapy. They also offer support groups where clients can talk openly about their experiences with addiction while learning from others who have gone through similar situations themselves.

The San Antonio area is home to several substance abuse treatment facilities, including:

  • The San Antonio Center for Chemical Dependency provides outpatient and residential services for those struggling with addiction.
  • The Austin Recovery Center offers a variety of detoxification and rehabilitation programs to help individuals overcome their substance use disorder.
  • The Recovery Place is a non-profit organization that offers drug and alcohol treatment to individuals in San Antonio and surrounding areas.

San Antonio has many resources available for those battling addiction or who have loved ones struggling with substance abuse disorders. Additional options in surrounding areas include:

  • Resurgence Texas in Wimberly
  • Casa Grande Treatment Facility
  • Sunrise Recovery Center

After completing treatment, maybe you’re thinking about making San Antonio a permanent home.

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The Thriving Recovery Community of San Antonio

San Antonio is a beautiful city with a lot to offer. It is the second-largest city in Texas and is home to various recreational activities. When it comes to living arrangements or jobs in San Antonio, you will find plenty of options.

Recovery Community of San Antonio

Recreational Activities

San Antonio offers a wide variety of recreational activities for people relocating to the area for substance abuse treatment. The city has two professional sports teams: the Spurs (NBA) and the Silver Stars (WNBA).

Both teams play at the AT&T Center, which seats 18,500 people. There are also several minor league teams in San Antonio, including the Missions (baseball), Rampage (hockey), and Fireballs (indoor soccer).

If you like outdoor activities, there are many parks around town, including Alamo Park and Brackenridge Park, which has biking trails and horseback riding. In addition to parks, there are also many hiking trails near downtown, such as Government Canyon State Natural Area, Loop 1604 Trail, and Wilderness Oak Mountain State Natural Area.


San Antonio has a moderate climate year-round, with average temperatures ranging from 60 degrees Fahrenheit in January to 80 degrees in July. The city averages only (approximately) 44 inches of rain annually, so there are plenty of sunny days to enjoy your sobriety.

San Antonio has very affordable living options if you’re thinking about seeking permanent residency.

Renting an apartment or home in San Antonio will run around $900-$1,200 per month, depending on where you live. There are plenty of neighborhoods within walking distance from downtown that offer affordable housing options, such as Southtown, King William Historic District, and Blue Star Arts District.


San Antonio’s economy is the 2nd largest in Texas and the 35th largest in the US. The city is an economic powerhouse in Texas for a good reason.

The region has a diverse economy that includes manufacturing, bioscience and healthcare, distribution, financial services, and tourism.

Some of the major employers in San Antonio include:

  • USAA
  • Valero Energy
  • TaskUS
  • VisionWorks
  • Rackspace Technology
  • Joint Base San Antonio


With an economy that has plenty of funds allocated toward public mental health and substance abuse treatment programs combined with plenty of job opportunities and a lower cost of living, San Antonio is an ideal option for a permanent move after substance abuse treatment.

Even if you’re making the visit temporary, plenty of providers accept all insurance types. Visit Find Addiction Rehabs for more information about the various substance abuse treatment programs in San Antonio, TX.