By: Robert M. Vincent, Public Health Analyst, SAMHSA’s Center for Substance Abuse Prevention
During adolescence, young people have new life experiences and enjoy greater freedom but are also exposed to peer pressure. One result of peer pressure is that many teens experiment with alcohol and other substances. According to SAMHSA’s 2017 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, an estimated 7.4 million people ages 12 to 20 reported consuming alcohol in the past month. The data also found that – in addition to alcohol – marijuana, prescription pain relievers and cigarettes were the next three substances used most frequently by youth trying a substance for the first time.
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