In America, as with the rest of the world, drug use is a social disease that preys on the poor. Drug use creates a cycle of poverty and crime that is much harder to break the poorer one is because help costs money and when battling an addiction few contemplate the fact that the money spent on recovery will often be less than that spent on two more years of drug use.
The most impoverished neighborhoods tend to have the most visible crime and therefore the most visible drug problems. However, drug use is pretty much equally distributed across all communities. However the drugs used by these different communities often vary due to many factors. Because some of these drugs are more cheaply manufactured or imported from their country of origin directly to the lower class neighborhoods where it’s distributed, and the education of their side effects is less prevalent, drugs like heroine, methamphetamine, and cocaine become widely distributed. These are also highly addictive drugs that the users are more likely to turn to crime to support. Government drug control programs tend to focus on visible signs of substance abuse. Many of these prevention programs focus on illicit drug use in impoverished and racial or social minority communities where drug markets are most visible. This frequently overlooks the root of the problem, after all the suppliers usually make enough money to move where their clientele are less likely to target them when money runs low and the need for their next fix has them contemplating just taking what they want.
In less impoverished neighborhoods you tend to find recreational drugs or abused prescription pharmaceuticals used more frequently than either heroin or cocaine or harder drugs. There is an ever increasing number of suburban youths who have tried marijuana, ecstasy, LSD or some other psychotropic drug. Many of them develop trends of regular use though convince themselves it’s not an addiction by spacing uses out with fixes ranging from once a year to once or twice a month. These are often considered gateway drugs as sometimes the fix with cease to be strong enough or they find they’ve been dealt a batch laced with one of the stronger more addictive drugs.