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Youth Indicators, 2005: Trends in the Well-Being of American Youth

Indicator 48: Tobacco, Alcohol, and Drug Use

Figure 48. Percentage of high school seniors who currently use cigarettes, alcohol, or illicit drugs, by race/ethnicity: 2004

Percentage of high school seniors who currently use cigarettes, alcohol, or illicit drugs, by race/ethnicity: 2004
1Smoked cigarettes daily in the 30 days preceding the survey.
2Had 5 or more drinks in a row in the 2 weeks preceding the survey.
3Used illicit drugs on one or more of the 30 days preceding the survey. Illicit drugs include marijuana, cocaine (including crack), heroin, hallucinogens (including LSD, PCP, and ecstasy (MDMA)), amphetamines (including methamphetamine), and nonmedical use of psychotherapeutics.
NOTE: Respondents self-selected race/ethnicity as White (Caucasian), Black (African American), or one of several Hispanic categories. Race/ethnicity data are a combination of data from 2003 and 2004. The response rate for this survey does not meet NCES statistical standards.
SOURCE: University of Michigan, Institute for Social Research, Monitoring the Future Study, 2004.

In 2004, 16 percent of all high school seniors reported smoking cigarettes daily in the past 30 days, 29 percent reported having five or more drinks in a row within the past 2 weeks, and 23 percent reported using illicit drugs 1 or more times in the past 30 days. The percentage of White seniors who reported the current use of cigarettes, alcohol, or illicit drugs was higher than the percentages of Black and Hispanic seniors. Alcohol use decreased from 72 percent of seniors reporting drinking alcohol at least once during the preceding 30 days in 1980 to 48 percent in 2004. The percentage of seniors who smoked cigarettes at least once during the preceding 30 days had declined from 37 percent in 1975 to 28 percent in 1992, then rose to 37 percent in 1997; since then, the percentage of seniors reporting they smoked cigarettes has declined to 25 percent in 2004. The percentage of seniors reporting illicit drug use declined from 37 percent in 1980 to 14 percent in 1992; however, the percentage increased to 26 percent during the 1990s, and slightly decreased to 23 percent in 2004.


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