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Addiction in the Entertainment Industry

Much of the public look up to their favorite entertainers as role models. Some individuals may wish that they could be like them, or that they could have the life that they seem to have.

However, part of the problem with this type of thinking is that it often overlooks the fact that many entertainers do not have the glamorous lives that we are often led to believe that they have. In fact, many entertainers are deep in the weeds with a substance addiction of some kind that governs their life. 

The Entertainment Industry is Particularly Vulnerable to Addiction

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration produced a 2015 statistical report that detailed how the entertainment industry was particularly vulnerable to addiction problems when compared to a variety of other industries. Some of the stats that jump off the page in their findings include: 

  • 11.5% of entertainment industry workers self-reported “heavy alcohol use” in the last month (this was the 3rd highest of all industries)
  • 12.9% of entertainment industry workers self-reported drug or alcohol dependence in the last year. That compares to just 9.5% on average for workers in all industries
  • 13.7% of illicit drug use in the past month was reported by entertainment industry workers from 2008 to 2012 (when this survey was done) compared to 12.9% from 2003 to 2007.

That last statistic seems to indicate that not only is there a drug and alcohol abuse problem in the entertainment industry, but that problem seems to be growing as the years go on. We do not have more recent numbers at this time, but one can fairly safely assume that the abuse of drugs and alcohol in the entertainment industry has likely only grown since those latest numbers.

Death in the Entertainment Industry

Frighteningly, it seems as if nearly all of us can name at least a few celebrities that have died as a result of their substance abuse issues. Much of society has chopped this up as just something that happens, but it is dangerous how comfortable many of us have become to the idea of celebrities succumbing to their substance abuse addictions, particularly since many do so at a young age. 

American Addiction Centers reports that the number of celebrities dying from addiction issues is on the rise: 

A 2016 study, published in Substance Abuse Treatment, Prevention, and Policy, examined nearly 300 celebrities who died by drug overdose between 1970 and 2015.2 The rate of drug-related celebrity deaths has nearly doubled in the 21st century, with a significant increase of prescription opioid involvement. More than half of the celebrities included in this study were from the entertainment industry.

The pressure to perform and to maintain the picture-perfect life that much of the public believes that celebrities have is a big part of the problem for many of these celebrities. They simply cannot maintain the sky-high expectations that some of their fans have for them (because no one can), and they may turn to drugs and/or alcohol to cope. 

Additionally, many entertainers come from troubled backgrounds and are often not given the space that they need to deal with those issues in a productive way. Thus, they may feel the need to turn to drugs to try to ease the pain. 

Glamorizing Substance Abuse

One issue that needs to be dealt with right away is the glamorizing of substance abuse issues among our celebrities. There is a myth in certain parts of our culture that holds that celebrities who abuse substances are somehow doing something that should be praised. 

The trope of the tortured artist who must abuse drugs in order to perform at their highest levels is something that has continued to exist in society for far too long. Allowing it to stay around and for people to honestly believe that this is the way things ought to be is extremely troubling for our society and for the celebrities who are negatively impacted by this type of thinking. 

When substance abuse is glamorized in celebrity culture, it may lead to young people who look up to those celebrities suddenly thinking that it is both acceptable and cool to engage in this type of destructive behavior. Thus, the glamorizing of substance abuse when directed at celebrities may indirectly have a negative impact on society as a whole. No one should want that, and it is why we must put an end to this potentially deadly process right now. 

Treatment Options

There is still hope for those who are facing substance addiction and abuse issues. They can and should attend a treatment facility that can promise them confidential treatment options from trained professionals. This is the best way to receive the care that they desperately need. 

Trained drug addiction specialists, such as our team who work at White House Recovery and Detox, understand that each patient who walks in has a unique set of factors in their life that have caused them to arrive at the point where they are at today. We pride ourselves on being respectful of the unique set of circumstances that have landed a particular patient in our facility. 

Our team will review all of the factors that led to a patient’s arrival at our facility. The team at White House Recovery and Detox will develop a unique treatment plan for each patient based on their needs. 

Generally, our treatment plan will involve a combination of: 

These are the kinds of things that people need when they are faced with a crippling drug addiction that is causing them trouble. To be heard and understood is often what is necessary. Celebrities or entertainment professionals often don’t get that kind of help in their day-to-day lives, and that is why it is so critical that professionals get to them before they spiral any further down the path of destructive addiction. 

White House Recovery and Detox is here to help you start your recovery journey. Help is available, contact our team of professionals today!

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