14 Professions with the Highest Drug Abuse Rates

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In this article about 14 professions with the highest drug abuse rates we are determined to give you a list of individual, real jobs, instead of industry groups. And the industry is suffering greatly due to a large number of drug addicts in all spheres. Apparently, the number of drug addicts in the US is so big it’s striking a hard blow on the economy.

Once you’ve read the title, you probably have celebrities in mind, but the reality is much more different. The cost of drug and alcohol abuse in the US economy is $442 billion, which is a staggering number. But that’s a mutual effort, coming from all professions, and the unemployed, too. A question arises why so many workers are doing drugs. Of course, it’s mostly related to stress at their workplace. Some jobs are more likely than the others to provoke interest in illegal substances and their abuse. Our primary source was the Fast Company. We should mention once again the prejudices about certain professions. For instance, drug abuse in medical profession is widely discussed and expected. On the one hand, medical workers deal with stressful situations daily, sometimes even questions of life and death. What is more, they actually have pretty easy access to all kinds of drugs an addict may wish for. Surprisingly, the percentage of healthcare workers with substance abuse is rather low compared to other jobs – only 5.7%. Personal service workers are more likely to misuse drugs and their rate is 7.7%. Perhaps a better question would be how much do surgeons drink (15%) and how many lawyers are alcoholics (29% in their first decade of practice).

Professions with the Highest Drug Abuse Rates


But let’s go back to substance abuse. Our starting point was the research which is cited by many sources, and it also appears on Fast Company‘s website. However, since some professions were listed rather as categories, we decided to find specific jobs, which was a more challenging task. We read two articles by NCBI (National Center for Biotechnology Information). Then, there were Bloomberg, Intervention Strategies, Forest Safe, Confirm Biosciences, Clinical Services of Rhode Island, Press Herald, USA Mobile Drug Testing and Daily Caller for the latest information. As for the percentages, the most recent information has precedence. Since we were looking for specific professions, they were listed according to their own figures, and not according to the overall percentage of the whole category. Only sometimes did we make an exception and gave you a general term for such workers since our source insisted all the jobs belonging to the category have practically the same number of drug addicts.

In addition, it has to be noted that the term “drug abuse” is understood as taking any drugs whose use is illegal in some way. Those are any pills or medicine taken without a doctor’s order. Regardless of the latest events and protests, we did consider cannabis a drug in this research. Actually, if you wonder what drug has the highest addiction rate, that would be marijuana.

In case similar topics interest you, we discussed professions with highest rate of alcoholism in 18 Professions with the Highest Alcoholism Rates in US. Depression is one of the common causes of drug abuse, and you can find information on professions with highest rates of depression in 15 Professions with the Highest Depression Rates in America. You should definitely be careful about choosing a career in one of them, and the same goes for professions with highest rate of domestic violence (more on them in 10 Professions with Highest Rate of Domestic Violence).

Now would be the time to take a look which workers are struggling the most, i.e., 14 professions with the highest drug abuse rates.

14. Repair, installation and maintenance worker

Drug abuse rate: 8.2 %

As you will see later, this percentage will appear rather modest compared to the others.

Professions with the Highest Drug Abuse Rates

Dmitry Kalinovsky/Shutterstock.com

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