North Carolina Substance Use Disorder


North Carolina is facing an increase in substance use disorder (like most states).  This is being driven by the dangerous opioid crisis going on in America. In fact, opioids account for the majority of North Carolina overdose deaths.  At the same time, the state is facing dramatic increases in co-occurring mental health disorders, like depression or bipolar.  Both problems have been exacerbated by isolation during the Covid-19 Pandemic.

According to the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, the number of drug overdose deaths — from illegal substances and/or medications — increased by nearly 1,000 deaths, from 2,352 in 2019 to 3,304 in 2020. There were also almost 15,000 emergency room visits related to drug overdoses in 2020. Data suggest these upward trends continued through 2021.


The opioid (fentanyl) crisis is a problem in every state in the country, and North Carolina is included. Opioid use disorder is very difficult to stop on your own without inpatient detox and residential treatment. Here are some of the recent opioid crisis statistics for North Carolina.

  • In 2018, nearly 80% of all drug overdose deaths were related to opioids.
  • North Carolina healthcare providers prescribed 10% more opioid prescriptions than the national average.
  • Healthcare costs for opioid users are twice as much than abstinent North Carolinians.
  • In 2018, opioid-related overdose deaths cost North Carolina $2.3 billion.


Alcohol use disorder continues to grow in North Carolina. A couple of the highlighted statistics for North Carolina from the National Institute of Health include:

  • 50% of North Carolinians report having at least one drink every 30 days..
  • In 2017, about 4,000 people were killed by alcohol-related causes.
  • In a 2018 survey, 27% of adults reported binge drinking in last 30 days.
  • In the same 2018 survey, 12% of adults reported heavy drinking within the last 30 days.
  • Alcohol abuse in North Carolina has been on the rise since 2012 and is the third leading cause of preventable deaths statewide.


Located on Hilton Head Island, BriteLife Recovery welcomes many North Carolinians to our South Carolina drug and alcohol rehab each year. While North Carolina offers a variety of treatment centers, many adults prefer to go out of state to remove themselves from their community so they can concentrate on getting better without distraction. At the same time, our accredited treatment center is typically only a 3-hour drive from most North Carolina metropolitan areas.

BriteLife Recovery provides innovative and individualized South Carolina addiction treatment programs for detox, residential, partial hospitalization, and intensive outpatient settings. We provide medication assisted treatment for opioid and alcohol use disorder while encouraging health and wellness through our holistic therapies and activities. Our medical and clinical teams are devoted to delivering a healing experience and recovery from alcohol and drugs.

We also offer treatment for co-occurring disorders. This includes medication and therapy that is treated concurrently. Our Hilton Head team are also trained in trauma response care. Our value proposition is to offer North Carolina families with a collaborative approach to individualized treatment that is centered on client choice that puts them on the path to recovery and wellness. We do this in a resort-like setting in the heart of Hilton Head Island.

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  • 2200 Main Street, Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, 29926
  • 866.470.2187