More than one in five Louisiana residents report using a drug or medicated substance to alter their mood or relax on a near-daily basis, according to a Gallup poll released Wednesday.
Louisiana’s rate of 22.9 percent for daily drug/medication use puts it in the Top 5 states nationally. West Virginia is No. 1, with a rate of 28.1 percent, followed by Rhode Island (25.9%), Kentucky (24.5%), Alabama (24.2%) and Louisiana.
States with the lowest rates are Alaska (13.5%), Wyoming (15.5%) and California (15.8%). Nationally, 18.9% of Americans report using a mood-altering substance nearly every day.
The poll, which included 450 residents of each state, was conducted from January to December 2014. While the question specifically refers to drugs that “affect your mood or help you relax,” the interpretation of that description is left up to respondents and could include prescription drugs, recreational drugs, alcohol or nicotine.