Addiction Treatment

Jobs With a High Rate of Substance Abuse

Written By:

Becky Babb

Jobs With a High Rate of Substance Abuse

Recent data was compiled by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) highlighting which jobs have a higher rates of substance or alcohol abuse. Work can be a major stressor in our lives but some jobs create more stress than others with some workers choosing drug or alcohol abuse as a way to relieve stress as a coping mechanism.


Drinking and drug abuse impact the work environment significantly. Lost productivity, workplace accidents and illnesses or sick days due to substance abuse create challenges for any employer. Almost 9 percent of adults working full time drank heavily in the month prior to being surveyed. Nearly 10 percent of employed adults abused drugs or alcohol in the last year or were considered to be addicted to drugs or alcohol.


The survey broke down the numbers and figures into categories such as workplace industries and found much variability in rates of substance abuse versus place of employment. Mining and construction had the heaviest numbers of drinkers with 18 and 17 percent respectively reporting higher rates of alcoholism. The rest of the top five workplaces with the heaviest drinkers were hospitality/hotel and restaurant, arts and entertainment and utilities. Healthcare, education, finance and government had the lowest percentages.


Though no specific reasons were given through the data in the study, it was noted these workplace environments tend to have long, often odd hours required with shift work and lots of stress. Regardless of age or gender, these workers were more likely to be drug and alcohol users. Though they are more likely than other professions to find people using substances more heavily, it does not have to be this way. It is up to the individual to make different and better choices than their counterparts. Even if coworkers are drinking or abusing substances, it does not mean everyone has to do the same. Ultimately, it is up to us to take responsibility for our actions and find more positive and affirming ways to deal with adverse situations and stress. If you are in a high stress workplace where substance abuse is common or you have fallen to rely on substance abuse to maintain your job, The Last Resort can help you. Help is available. Another life is possible. Call us today at 512-750-6750

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