Psychoactive Drug Abuse in Teens and Young Adults

A recent report in the journal Family Medicine & Community Health suggests that teens and young adults are abusing stimulants and tranquilizers at a troubling rate.

The study's authors analyzed the responses of 110,556 12–25-year-olds in the U.S. who completed the 2015-2018 National Survey of Drug Use and Health to determine the drug use patterns of this age cohort.

Interestingly, among all psychoactive drugs, opioids were misused less frequently than other drugs.

Quoting the report, Medical use and misuse of psychoactive prescription medications among U.S. youth and young adults:

Science Daily offers this additional analysis of 18–25-year-olds, taken from the report:

So, what could be driving these trends?

While the study did not draw conclusions, they did note that 11.5% of the 18–25-year-olds who completed the survey also reported severe psychological difficulties.

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