The report by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration analyzed data from the National Survey of Drug Use and Health (NSDUH). The study revealed that the number of young people abusing cough and cold medications is comparable to those who say they have used LSD (3.1 million), and is significantly greater than the number who reported having tried methamphetamine (2.4 million).
The study also showed that white youths were three times more likely as black youths to have misused these non-prescription drugs.
Abuse Varies by Gender, Age Group
Other findings of the study included:
- Females aged 12 to 17 were more likely than their male counterparts to have misused these drugs within the past year (2.3 percent vs. 1.5 percent).
- Of those aged 18 to 25, however, more males had misused these drugs in the past year than females (1.8 percent vs. 1.3 percent).
- Among all persons aged 12 to 25, the rate of past year misuse among whites (2.1 percent) was three times higher than among blacks (0.6 percent) and significantly higher than among Hispanics (1.4 percent).
Source: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. New Study Reveals More Than 3 Million Adolescents and Young Adults Have Used Non-Prescription Cough and Cold Medicines to Get High at Least Once in Their Lifetimes Jan. 11, 2008.