New Agents of AbuseUnderstanding Prescription Drug Misuse by Adolescents
January 01, 2009
A large percentage of youths use and abuse psychoactive substances. According to the 2007 Monitoring the Future (MTF) survey, the percentage of US adolescents who used illicit drugs or drank alcohol continued a decade-long drop, revealing that 19% of 8th graders, more than 36% of 10th graders, and 47% of all 12th graders have taken an illicit drug (other than alcohol) during their lifetime.1 According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, the rate was 3.3% for misuse or nonmedical use of prescription drugs.2 The misuse of prescription drugs among adolescents was second only to marijuana use. In fact, prescription drugs increasingly have become a part of the repertoire of drug-using adolescents.