Growing Proportion of Teens Abstain From Drugs and Alcohol

refusing beer at party

A growing proportion of teens are abstaining from drugs and alcohol, according to a new study.

One-quarter of high school seniors said they didn’t use drugs or alcohol in a nationwide survey conducted in 2014. In contrast, only 5 percent of high school seniors said they were abstinent in 1976, HealthDay reports.

Lead author Dr. Sharon Levy, who directs the adolescent substance use and addiction program at Boston Children’s Hospital, reports in Pediatrics that 60 percent of students in 8th grade were abstinent in 2014, up from 25 percent in 1991. Among 10th graders, 40 percent said they didn’t use drugs or alcohol in 2014, up from 10 percent in 1991.

Dr. Levy said the increase in abstinence may be due to public health efforts that encourage teens to stay away from drugs and alcohol because they are dangerous and unhealthy, rather than immoral or forbidden.

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    Lori Randall

    January 9, 2019 at 3:53 AM

    I need help for my 15Year old son. He is smoking pot daily and is not going to school. I have no control over him and we fight all the time. I really need advice on what to do with him I am at a loss!

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      Josie Feliz

      January 10, 2019 at 12:59 PM

      Thanks for your message Lori. We have forwarded your message to one of our helpline specialists who can help better answer your question, and she will be reaching out to you shortly.

      Our Helpline is a good place to start if you’d like to talk to someone about what you’re going through. Feel free to connect with us in whichever manner you choose in the future:

      Thank you. -The Partnership for Drug-Free Kids

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