March 25, 2019

Teens Are Vaping More, Drugging Less

“More teens are vaping than ever before, according to the government’s annual drug use survey. It’s a “dramatic increase” in use rates over the last year.

Of high school seniors, 37.3 percent reported they’d vaped in the last year — a near 10 percent jump from last year’s survey by the National Institute on Drug Abuse. That’s the single largest jump in usage rates of any drug in a single year — even more than during the height of marijuana use in the 1970s. Teens are also vaping more frequently, according to the survey, which includes 8th, 10th, and 12th-grade students. Reported use of nicotine vaping 30 days prior to the survey nearly doubled this year, from 11 percent to 20.9 percent.

But it’s not all bad news. Tobacco use is at its lowest since the National Institute on Drug Abuse began monitoring teen drug use. Only 3.6 percent of high school seniors reported daily smoking compared to 22.4 percent two decades ago, according to the survey. Opioid use also dropped almost a percent since last year, “a significant change,” according to the researchers who conducted the survey. Heroin use, in particular, remains very low among surveyed students. (Only 0.4 percent of seniors reported use in the last year.)”

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