Research Findings

Youth Violence and Illicit Drug Use
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), Offi ce of Applied Studies, National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), The NSDUH Report,
Issue 5, 2006

Data collected during the 2002, 2003, and 2004 NSDUH show:

• Youths aged 12 to 17 who used an illicit drug in the past year were almost twice as likely to have engaged in a violent behavior as those who did not use an illicit drug (49.8 vs. 26.6 percent; p. 1).

• Adolescents who were not attending or enrolled in school at the time of the survey were more likely to have engaged in violent behavior than those who were attending or enrolled in school (39.9 vs. 31.4 percent; p. 3).

• Rates of past-year violent behavior were higher among youths aged 13, 14, and 15 than those younger or older (p. 1). youthViolence/youthViolence.htm

Girls and Drugs—A New Analysis: Recent Trends, Risk Factors and Consequences Executive Offi ce of the President, Offi ce of National Drug Control Policy, February 2006

Analysis of recent trends in drug and alcohol use among girls shows that in 2004 more girls than boys started using alcohol, cigarettes, and marijuana. Teen girls also outnumber boys in their misuse of prescription drugs. Teen girls are vulnerable to unique risk factors shown to lead to substance use:

• Depression, anxiety, and concerns about appearance and weight; • Risky sexual behavior; • Early puberty;

• Psychiatric and conduct disorders;

• Physical and sexual abuse;

• Stress and low self-esteem; and

• Peer pressure.

National Survey of American Attitudes on Substance Abuse XI: Teens and Parents
The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA) at Columbia University, August 2006

Survey results indicate one-third of all teens and nearly half of 17-year-olds attend house parties where parents are present and teens are drinking, smoking marijuana, or using other drugs. The annual back-to-school assessment conducted by CASA also reveals that teens who attend parties where no parents are present are 16 times likelier to say alcohol is available, 15 times likelier to say illegal and prescription drugs are available, and 29 times likelier to say marijuana is available, compared to teens who say parents are always present at the parties they attend (p. ii).