Drinking and Drug Usage Still High Among Students

College is typically a time of exploring one’s freedom and finally figuring out oneself.  With that freedom and exploration comes experimentation.  This includes experimentation with drugs and alcohol.

In a report released recently by the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, it was reported that 1.2 million full-time students are drinking alcohol and 703,000 are smoking marijuana.

Of those students, 2,100 will be drinking for the first time and 1,300 are trying weed for the first time.

Among part-time students, 239,000 drink alcohol on a typical day and 195,000 smoke marijuana.

These are estimates that come from a survey conducted between 2011 and 2014 by the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, an organization that tracks drug use among Americans.  25,400 college students took part in the survey, and they represent the 9 million full-time students and 2 million part-time students.

The survey suggests that approximately 60% of full-time students drank alcohol in the past month.  39% of those engaged in binge drinking, which is defined as having at least 4 alcoholic beverages on one occasion for women and 5 for men.  13% who responded said that they had been binge drinking at least 5 times in the last 30 days.

While marijuana is the most widely-used illegal drug, the report showed that it was by no means the only drug.  11,300 students used cocaine on an average day and 9,808 used hallucinogens such as LSD or ecstasy.  More than 4,500 admitted to heroin use.  

Prescription pain relievers and stimulants were also abused, according to the report.  559 full-time students admitted to abusing prescription pain-killers and another 425 tried stimulants for the first time.

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