10 Jobs Commonly Exposed To Drug Abuse

Our jobs have a way of spilling into our everyday life. A poor work condition may cause mental and physical stress, which, too often, leads to alcohol and drug abuse.

Unproductivity, reoccurring employee absenteeism, and increasing accidents at the workplace are typical results of employees’ substance abuse.

That said, specific jobs/industries are more exposed to drugs and other substance abuse.

Here’s a quick look at ten jobs that are most commonly exposed to drug abuse.

Hospitality and restaurant

Restaurant workers have an increased rate of substance abuse. A 2015 survey shows that workers in the foodservice and accommodation industries were most exposed to substance abuse. The stats say 16.9 percent of workers abuse drugs.

For stress, workers in this industry abuse depressants like marijuana and alcohol and may consume amphetamines or cocaine to stay up at long shifts.

Health Care Professional

Jobs in the healthcare niche are arguably the most stressful, globally. Since they are responsible for people’s lives, the pressure and stress can sometimes be unbearable.

Some researchers believe doctors are even more prone to prescription drug abuse than their patients.

Arts and entertainment

Musicians and actors have maintained an age-long relationship with drug use. Generally, those in the creativity niches are thought to use alcohol and drugs somewhere above average. The need to figure out of the block, irregular working hours, and socialization may contribute to artists’ higher tendency to use substances.

Legal professionals

A 2016 American Bar Association finding reports that approximately one in every five attorneys are staunch alcoholics. This is common among younger lawyers. It is logical to think these young barristers result in substance use to cope with the unexpected growing demands of their profession.


Study says about 15 percent of employees in the construction profession may struggle with alcohol or drug use.

With their high exposure to pain and injuries, opioid use has become typical in the last decade. For instance, the Department of Public Health, Massachusetts, conducted research which shows that 26 percent of opioids related deaths between 2011 to 2015 were of workers in the construction and mining industries.


Although management can mean a lot of things, here, we mean anything from a CEO down to team supervisors.

Survey shows 12.1 percent of sampled managerial functionaries admitted substance use in the past month. Of the same sampled number, 11.4% reported problems with substance use in the past year.

Sales professionals

Workers in this niche are usually under high pressure to close deals. This, plus the high tendency to socialize, are likely responsible for their above-average substance use.

Data shows that about 10.5 percent of salespersons in retail, 10.4 percent in wholesale, and 10 percent in real estate had substance use disorder the previous year.

The Cops

Generally, law enforcement officers are faced with emergencies, tough work hours, irregular work schedules, high risks, and generally stressful work environments.

Too often, these officers seek solace in drug use. Survey says approximately one in every four officers has alcohol- and drug-related problems.


Firefighters and the cops face some similar challenges. A study on professional fighters shows 60 percent of participants reported binge drinking.

Firefighters have reported high cases of mental concerns, including anxiety, depression, PTSD, and suicide ideation.


Although they undergo regular drug tests, veterans are more prone to alcohol use – way more than the average civilian. While the report says one in every eleven civilians had substance disorder, one in every five military personnel deals with substance use.


In some ways, we all seek ways to handle life’s stress, particularly work-induced. Many find this coping mechanism in substance use, which, too often, turns to abuse and eventual dependence.

While it may not be easy to switch jobs, consider detoxing from weed and talking to a therapist if your job requirement encourages drug use.

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