Nationally projectable survey results from the 2012 Partnership Attitude Tracking Study (PATS) released by The Partnership for Drug-Free Kids and MetLife Foundation found troubling data on teens’ intentional misuse of prescription stimulants.
The survey found a significant increase in teen misuse of Ritalin and Adderall, a link between lax parental attitudes about prescription stimulants and teen misuse, and mixed results on teen misuse of other substances. Additional findings include the following:
- One in four teens has misused an Rx drug at least once in their lifetime – a 33 percent increase over the past five years.
- One in eight teens (13 percent) reports that they have taken the stimulants Ritalin or Adderall when it was not prescribed for them, at least once in their lifetime.
- Nearly one-third of parents say they believe Rx stimulants like Ritalin or Adderall, normally prescribed for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), can improve a teen’s academic performance even if the teen does not have ADHD.
- One in four teens (26 percent) believes that prescription drugs can be used as a study aid.
- One in five parents (20 percent) report that they have given their teen a prescription drug that was not prescribed for them.