Wyoming is the least densely populated state in the United States. Its low population means that Wyoming has relatively few problems with substance abuse compared to more highly populated states. However, drug problems still exist in Wyoming. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reports that 16.4 drug overdose deaths occurred in Wyoming for every 100,000 people during 2015. This statistic gives Wyoming a per capita ranking of 23rd in the United States.

Wyoming Drug And Alcohol Rehab Centers

The best Wyoming drug rehab centers provide a variety of therapeutic approaches and ancillary services. They also vary greatly inpatient settings and payment methods. Some highly-rated centers are also located in small towns in Wyoming.

Fremont Counseling Service – Lander, WY

Fremont Counseling Service offers several therapeutic approaches, including cognitive behavioral therapy, dialectical behavioral therapy, and rational emotive behavioral therapy. It also provides a range of related services such as trauma-related counseling, motivational interviewing, anger management and relapse prevention.

Volunteers of America Northern Rockies – Sheridan, WY

Volunteers of America Northern Rockies offers all of the major therapeutic approaches, including the 12-step method. It’s also certified as a state substance abuse agency and accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities.

Southwest Counseling – Rock Springs, WY

Southwest Counseling Residential is a treatment community for men that offers both short-term and long-term care in addition to residential detoxification. It also provides maintenance treatments with buprenorphinenaltrexoneacamprosate campral and disulfiram antabuse.

Youth Emergency Services Incorporated – Gillette, WY

Youth Emergency Services Incorporated offers treatments for both mental health and substance abuse. It’s treatment settings include residential and outpatient care in addition to partial hospitalization and transitional housing.

Wyoming Drug Services

The Public Health Division of the Wyoming Department of Health administers that state’s Substance Abuse Prevention Program (SAPP). This program focuses on alcohol abuse, including binge drinking and underage drinking. It also handles illegal drug use, especially methamphetamine, heroin, and marijuana. The abuse of prescription drugs is another area of concentration for the SAPP, including painkillers, cough medicine, and anti-depressants.

SAPP’s community activities are based on Community Prevention Specialists (CPSs) who work with local organizations to prevent drug use, especially among teenagers. CPSs also assess community needs, including the strengths, challenges and current conditions.

Paying For Wyoming Drug And Alcohol Treatment

Wyoming’s economy is largely based on mining and ranching. This economy results in a greater reliance on self-payment for rehab programs. Approximately 91.8 percent facilities in the United States accept self-payment from the patient. However, the corresponding figure for Wyoming is 95.7 percent. Seventy percent of rehab centers in the United States take private health insurance, but only 56.5 percent of the facilities Wyoming do so.

63.7 percent of rehabs in the United States accept Medicaid, but this figure drops to 52.2 percent for Wyoming. The percentages of rehabs that accept other types of government funding are 53.1 for the United States. However, only 21.7 percent of rehab centers in Wyoming receive other types of government funding.

Wyoming Drug Statistics

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) provides state-specific statistics on drug use in Wyoming. These figures are accurate to the nearest thousand unless otherwise stated.

Approximately 7,000 Wyomingites above the age of 12 were admitted to rehab facilities in 2016. This figure includes both inpatient and outpatient settings. About 2,000 admissions were made in Wyoming for illicit drugs such as cocaine, heroin, marijuana, methamphetamine, hallucinogens, and inhalants. The number of admissions for alcohol use in Wyoming was about 1,000 in 2016. About 4,000 Wyomingites were admitted for substance abuse in 2016 as defined by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV). These substances include illicit drugs, alcohol, and painkillers.

The number of Wyomingites admitting to binge alcohol use within the past month was about 13,900 in 2016. Binge alcohol use is drinking a minimum of five alcoholic drinks for males and four drinks for females. This consumption must occur within a couple of hours to be considered binge drinking. The minimum number of drinks for females was reduced from five in 2015.

Methamphetamine is currently the drug of greatest concern in Wyoming. The primary reason is the combination of methamphetamine’s high rate of use and its strong association with violence. This drug is a significant cause of the recent increase in child and spousal abuse in Wyoming.

Prescription drug use is also rising in Wyoming, especially opiates such as hydrocodone and oxycodone. Marijuana is another common recreational drug. This is primarily due to Wyoming’s large rural area, which makes it easy to grow without getting caught. Cocaine and heroin are available in small amounts in Wyoming, although their use hasn’t increased to the extent of methamphetamine. Other illegal drugs are also available in Wyoming, but their distribution may not be as widespread as other drugs.

Wyoming Drug Possession Laws

Drug laws in Wyoming are quite severe, especially for marijuana. The minimum amount needed to constitute a felony is three ounces, which isn’t unusual. However, the minimum sentence for four ounces or more of marijuana is five years. Medical marijuana is also illegal in Wyoming, even if you have a medical use card from another state. These laws are particularly significant since the neighboring state of Colorado has extremely lenient laws regarding marijuana.

The maximum punishment for the first misdemeanor possession of drugs is one-year imprisonment and a $1,000 fine. The maximum punishment for the first felony possession of drugs is a seven-year sentence and fine of $15,000. The possession of drugs with the intent to sell or distribute is much stiffer, with a maximum punishment of 20 years and a fine of $25,000. Wyoming allows the use of drugs in natural form such as peyote for legitimate religious purposes.

Wyoming Rehab Treatment Approaches

The approaches that rehab programs in Wyoming differ significantly from the United States as a whole. Wyoming generally leans much more heavily towards conservative treatments than most other states. For example, 47 percent of the rehab programs in the United States use rational emotive behavioral therapy. By comparison, only 13 percent of such programs in Wyoming use this approach. Thirteen percent of rehab programs use dialectical behavioral therapy in the United States, but 39 percent of programs in Wyoming use this method. The national figure for 12-step programs is 27 percent, while 48 percent of programs in Wyoming are based on this traditional approach.


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