Rising economy sees increase in cocaine use

Rising economy sees increase in cocaine use

Cocaine is the third most-used illegal drug in Ireland after opiates and cannabis.

17% of all people treated for drug addiction had a problem with cocaine.

Those addicted to opiates remained the largest group at 45%, while one in four were treated for dependence on cannabis.

The Health Research Board's latest statistics cover 2017, and also reveal four out of five cocaine addicts were male.

The organisation's senior researcher Dr Suzi Lyons says cocaine use has risen and fallen along with the country's economic fortunes.

"You could say the trends might mirror the economy," she said.

"We saw a dip in the numbers treated in 2011 and 2012 and again as I said since 2014 we've seen this gradual increase with this quite significant jump of 32% between 2016 and 2017.

"For 2018 we don't expect that trend to change and we predict that it may in fact increase."


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