United States Drug Report
New reports are indicating a fall in prescription drug addiction among young people. New numbers from the United States show a 14 percent drop in prescription abuse by people 18 to 25 between 2010 and 2011.
The U.S. government found that the number of 18 to 25 year-old's, who had claimed to abuse prescription drugs in the past month, fell from 2 million to 1.7 million over the year.
"These findings show that national efforts to address the problem of prescription drug misuse may be beginning to bear fruit and we must continue to apply this pressure to drive down this and other forms of substance use," SAMHSA Administrator Pamela Hyde said in an agency news release.
The report also found that past month alcohol consumption for 12-20 year-old's dropped four percent between 2002 and 2011. This helped to lower binge drinking, which fell by more than 19 percent. Even heavy drinking fell from six percent to 4.4 percent.
While most illicit drug use remained stable, cannabis use saw a slight increase of one percent. It remains the most used illegal drug by people 12 and over. This means cannabis is used by roughly 7 percent of all Americans.
"Behind each of these statistics are individuals, families and communities suffering from the consequences of abuse and addiction. We must continue to promote robust prevention, treatment and recovery programs throughout our country," Pamela Hyde said.
The report also showed an increase in heroin use. The number of users went from over 300 thousand in 2007 to more than 600 thousand in 2011. Conversely, cocaine use, methamphetamine use and hallucinogens all decreased.
Gil Kerlikowske, director of National Drug Control Policy, said in the news release: "Drug use in this country creates too many obstacles to opportunity — especially for young people. The good news is that we are not powerless against this problem. By emphasizing prevention and treatment, as well as smart law enforcement efforts that break the cycle of drug use, crime and incarceration, we know we can reduce drug use and its consequences in America."