Drugs have been used by humans for pretty much all of human history. According to the National Library of Medicine, the medicinal use of opium is described from the earliest written records. When you hear the words drugs, you either think of certain kinds of medicine or things that are illegal and bad for you.

Unsplash - Myriam Zilles
Unsplash - Myriam Zilles

In the United States, drug abuse has a very long and complicated history. In 1971, President Richard Nixon declared a "war on drugs," which continues to be a complicated issue to this day. Across the entire country, debates on which drugs should be legal and which should be illegal, happen on a daily basis.

Despite America's best efforts, illegal drug sales, illegal drug use, and overdoses are a regular occurrence.  Some states struggle with overdose issues more than others. Where does Iowa rank in the U.S. for states with the most drug use?

Before we find out where Iowa ranks, it should be noted that not all drugs are bad for you. Some drugs can help you relieve pain, certain drugs fight off disease, some may help ward off headaches/body aches, and some are used to celebrate your 21st birthday.

Iowa's Drug Use

Wallet Hub has put together a study on states that have the biggest issues with drug abuse problems. They've compared all 50 states as well as the District of Columbia and they've discovered that drug abuse problems in Iowa might not be as bad as you may think. They've used 20 key metrics in their study, which range from arrest and overdose rates, opioid prescriptions, and employee drug testing laws.

Source: WalletHub

Iowa ranks 45th in its study of Drug Use By State. Is there room for improvement when it comes to drug problems in Iowa? Of course. Every single state in the U.S. could learn to improve and be better when it comes to drug problems.

I did wonder if Iowa's population played a factor in the study. Iowa isn't tiny by any means but it's definitely not one of the most populated states. According to Stats America, Iowa is the 31st state when it comes to population size. It appears population size doesn't play as much of a factor as I thought it might. California is the most populated state and they rank 39th in Drug Use By State, according to Wallet Hub.

New Mexico dominates this study and it's really not very close. They come in as the worst state for drug use by a pretty big margin. After totaling all of the scores with the metrics used, New Mexico has a total score of 71.26. It is the only state above a score of 70. Second place was West Virginia with a total score of 66.67.

If you, a family member, or a friend has a drug problem, you can visit YourLifeIowa to find help or you can call 855-581-8111.

Movies That Iowans Watch When They Feel Like Garbage

We all have a movie that no matter how many times we've seen it, we'll still sit down and watch it.

10 Myths About Iowa That Even Some Natives Believe

Iowa is an ag state with more heads of hog than human, but there's a lot more to us than crops and critters. How many people actually know that, however?

More From 97X