West Chester, Ohio is a medium-sized suburb of Cincinnati of just over 50,000 residents located in the southwestern corner of Ohio. As West Chester is situated just outside a major urban center and is located at a hub over several major American highways, it is a serious center for drug activity. This includes drug use and drug trafficking and as a result, drug overdoses are quite common in West Chester. Due to the high availability of drugs in the area and the escalating overdose rates across the state, finding help from a West Chester drug and alcohol rehab center can mean the difference between life and death.
Substance Abuse In West Chester
West Chester has seen a consistently, although dramatic, rise in overdose deaths over the last decade. In 2013, there were 3 overdose deaths in West Chester, but by 2017 this had risen to 15. While it may not sound like a large increase, the fairly small population of West Chester should be taken into account as well. This increase led to the overdose death rate increasing from 4.9 deaths per 100,000 residents to a staggering 23.8 deaths per 100,000 in 2017. This is a significant increase of just over 385%. These overdose deaths have also disproportionately affected younger age groups, with the 20 to 34-year-old age group experiencing the majority of overdose deaths, followed by the 50 to 64-year-old age group.
Over the last 5 years, there have also been multiple high-profile drug seizures and arrests in and around West Chester for drug-related crimes, including drug trafficking. In 2016, 14 people were arrested for heroin distribution, one of which was a school sports coach. Additionally, crystal meth is becoming increasingly available near West Chester, as a man from nearby Fairfield was arrested trafficking crystal meth to and from Michigan. In cooperation with Michigan Police, the Butler County Sheriff’s Office was instrumental in seizing over 5 pounds of crystal meth along with several high-powered guns. Finally, in 2019, a couple was arrested for selling drugs, and when arrested, law enforcement seized 1.5 kilos (3.3 pounds) of cocaine, a half-kilo of crystal meth, marijuana, and a pill press.
As with many other areas in Ohio, Wester Chester has seen a rise in heroin that is cut with potentially dangerous adulterants. Heroin is dangerous enough on its own, but when additional drugs are used to “cut” heroin to increase profits, the dangers rise drastically. Around West Chester, some of the more common cutting agents that have been used increasingly often over the last few years include fentanyl, acetyl fentanyl, diphenhydramine, mannitol, and triacetin. Crystal meth has also increased in availability and potency in West Chester over the last few years. It is suspected that Mexican drug cartels have begun dealing crystal meth in preference to cocaine since meth is easier to manufacture, is more addictive, and can cost more.
West Chester’s Response To Substance Abuse
While the drug problem in West Chester is severe, the community is working to reduce the harm that drugs create. Butler County has created a specific task force to reduce the presence of drugs within, and passing through, West Chester and surrounding communities. The B.U.R.N. (Butler Undercover Regional Narcotics) squad is a multi-agency drug enforcement task force that has made several high-profile seizures in recent years. Aside from law enforcement, there are also many community organizations, charities, and government-funded recovery organizations that are doing good work in West Chester as well.
Just a few of these helpful groups and programs include:
- Community First Solutions: A non-profit drug and alcohol treatment provider, they work closely with state law enforcement to provide rehabilitation services through drug or DUI-court programs. They also provide voluntary services including outpatient detox and treatment services. These programs help keep people out of jail and give them the help they need to get sober.
- Butler County Mental Health & Addiction Recovery Services Board: A community organization that acts as a hub and first point of contact for helping people struggling with drugs, alcohol, or mental health issues find reliable and affordable treatment services throughout Butler County.
- Ohio CARES – Butler County: A resource page for mental health and substance abuse resources located in West Chester and throughout Butler County.
- West Chester Drug Takeback Day: A drug disposal program that accepts prescription drugs, vape juice, and a variety of other drugs and paraphernalia with locations in and around West Chester.
- State of Ohio Board of Pharmacy: A search tool to find pharmacies in Ohio that provide naloxone for opioid overdose prevention with no prescription required. They currently list 10 pharmacies in West Chester with several dozen more in the surrounding areas.
Drug and Alcohol Detox & Rehab in West Chester
Knowing that help is needed is the first step towards recovery from substance abuse. Different drugs come with different risks, and this can include risks during withdrawal. Some drugs only produce psychological symptoms during withdrawal, and cannot directly kill, but other drugs can produce dangerous and potentially fatal withdrawal symptoms and medical help is required to quit these drugs. Getting the professional help of a West Chester drug and alcohol detox center can be a crucial and necessary step in safely quitting drug use. At Ohio Addiction Recovery Centers detox program near West Chester, we can provide medical supervision, medication management, and supportive care to help someone make it through the potentially dangerous detox process in a safe and comfortable manner. Once detox has been completed safely, treatment can begin, and someone can begin the work of changing their life and living free from drug or alcohol addiction.
Addiction Recovery In West Chester
During their time in our treatment programs at Ohio Addiction Recovery Center, our clients are encouraged to make new friends and connections in their local recovery fellowships. These new relationships can help someone immensely during their transition out of treatment and into a life of sobriety. Finding a recovery group where someone can relate to others is a crucial part of this process, and thankfully there are many different recovery fellowships around West Chester. Some of these fellowships are 12-step-based, while others are more religious or spiritually focused. There is no correct group, and everyone will connect in a different way with different people. A few of the 12-step recovery fellowships around West Chester include:
- Alcoholics Anonymous: The AA Cincinnati website currently does not have any meetings listed in West Chester itself, but there are several dozen meetings every week across Greater Cincinnati.
- Narcotics Anonymous: The NA Meeting Directory for Hamilton & Middletown currently lists 2 NA meetings per week in West Chester.
Aside from 12-step groups, there are other options as well. These include religious programs and more spiritually-minded meditative fellowships. Finding one that aligns with someone’s needs and sensibilities can make a huge difference in their recovery. Some of the non-12-step groups around West Chester include:
- Recovery Dharma: This Buddhism-inspired recovery program has no in-person meetings in West Chester, but they do have virtual meetings every day of the week.
- SMART Recovery: An acronym for Self-Management And Recovery Training, they currently hold 2 meetings per week near West Chester.
There are many different groups for people who have struggled with substance abuse themselves, but what about their friends and families who have had to watch them struggle? There are specific fellowships and support groups for the friends and families of people in recovery too. Meeting others who have watched a loved one battle substance abuse can be extremely therapeutic and healthy, as they can share experience, strength, and hope with each other. Some of the support groups around West Chester for the friends and families of people in recovery include:
- Al-Anon: A fellowship for the friends and family of people who have struggled with alcohol, there are currently 7 Al-Anon meetings near West Chester each week.
- Nar-Anon: This fellowship is intended for the friends and family of people who are struggling with drugs and currently hosts 4 meetings around West Chester each week.