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Utah continually defies the averages found in the rest of the country. Where it may be the norm for economies to stagnate, our great state finds ways to grow through a diversity of sectors. Communities have worked together in unison towards bigger and better things and will continue to do so. If you were to sum up our state into one word, it would most likely be “cool.” Utahans have a proud sense of community. There are support networks in every family and group of friends, yet the state does face many problems with drug addiction and alcoholism. When there seems to be no hope and no one to turn to, know that Palm Partners Recovery Center is here.Our professional staff is at your disposal. We provide reassuring, wholly-satisfying and effective treatment programs. You can overcome your chemical dependency. Call us now.

Data shows that those in Utah for the most part are receiving the drug and alcohol detox and rehab they need. However, if you’re using and need immediate help, call Palm Partners Addiction Detox and Rehab now: 801-893-0018. Get into the right facility and transform your life. Our professionals are standing by, 24/7.

What you should know

Mexican poly-drug organizations dominate all areas of distribution throughout Utah. Supply sources are in Mexico, California, the Southwest and the Pacific Northwest.

Compared to other states

  • Illicit drugs overall – low for those 18 and older
  • Pharmaceuticals – average for those 18 and older
  • Cocaine – low for those 18 and older
  • Marijuana – low for those 18 and older
  • Alcohol – low for those 18 and older

Source: SAMHSA’s most recent National Survey on Drug Use and Health, based on 2008-2009 annual averages. SAMHSA is the Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration, part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

A closer look


Mostly Mexican. But marijuana also comes from British Columbia and is grown locally in remote areas of the state.


Not a significant problem.


Available throughout the state. Although Mexican organizations dominate large-scale distribution, many other groups distribute small quantities. Crack, converted locally, is available in small quantities.


OxyContin, diazepan, meperidine and methadone most abused. Sources are the illegal and distribution by health care professionals and workers, “doctor shopping,” forged prescriptions and employee theft.


A serious problem. Mexican brown and black tar are available throughout the state, and large amounts are distributed in major cities. Most Mexican organizations use runners who deliver heroin-filled balloons to customers in parking lots throughout Salt Lake, Davis and Utah counties. Mexico and southern California are source areas for multi-ounce quantities.


Local labs decreasing but Mexican meth increasing. Most of the remaining labs are small and mobile. Mexican poly-drug traffickers distribute meth from Mexico, southern California and the Southwest.

Club drugs

Wasatch Front a prime area of abuse. Local criminal organizations dominate the distribution of multi-1,000 quantities. These organizations have domestic sources mostly in California. The drugs are available at bars, clubs, private parties and raves.

Percentage of Utah population using/abusing drugs

AGE1 18+
Past Month Illicit Drug Use2 6.33
Past Year Marijuana Use 6.94
Past Month Marijuana Use 4.18
Past Month Use of Illicit Drugs Other Than Marijuana2 3.32
Past Year Cocaine Use 2.39
Past Year Nonmedical Pain Reliever Use 5.04
Perception of Great Risk of Smoking Marijuana Once a Month3 42.85
Past Month Alcohol Use 33.71
Past Month Binge Alcohol Use4 16.88
Perception of Great Risk of Drinking Five or More Drinks Once or Twice a Week3 49.45
Illicit Drug Dependence2 1.99
Illicit Drug Dependence or Abuse2 2.68
Alcohol Dependence 3.61
Alcohol Dependence or Abuse 6.86
Alcohol or Illicit Drug Dependence or Abuse2 8.39
Needing But Not Receiving Treatment for Illicit Drug Use2,6 2.46
Needing But Not Receiving Treatment for Alcohol Use6 6.44
Serious psychological distress 12.59
Having at least one major depressive episode7 8.07

1 Age group is based on a respondent’s age at the time of the interview, not his or her age at first use.

2 Illicit Drugs include marijuana/hashish, cocaine (including crack), heroin, hallucinogens, inhalants or prescription-type psychotherapeutics used non-medically. Illicit Drugs Other Than Marijuana include cocaine (including crack), heroin, hallucinogens, inhalants or prescription-type psychotherapeutics used non-medically.

3 When the Perception of Great Risk in using marijuana or alcohol is low, use of marijuana or alcohol is high.

4 Binge Alcohol Use is defined as drinking five or more drinks on the same occasion (i.e., at the same time or within a couple of hours of each other) on at least 1 day in the past 30 days.

5 Dependence or abuse is based on definitions found in the 4th edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV).

6 Needing But Not Receiving Treatment refers to respondents needing treatment for illicit drugs or alcohol, but not receiving treatment at a specialty facility.

7 Major Depressive Episode is a period of at least 2 weeks when a person experienced a depressed mood or loss of interest or pleasure in daily activities and had a majority of the symptoms for depression as described in the DSM-IV.

Source: Condensed version of the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 2004 and 2005, from SAMHSA, Office of Applied Studies.

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