Substance Use During Childhood or Adolescence Linked to Long-term Health Risks

Posted Aug 18, 2014

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The risk of developing drug dependence or abuse is greater for individuals who start using these substances in adolescence or early adolescence than for those who start during adulthood. According to a new report by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), people who start using substances at a young age are at greater risk of needing treatment later.
 
In 2011, 74 percent of people ages 18 to 30 who were admitted for substance abuse treatment started using substances at 17 or younger. The report also showed that 10.2 percent of those admitted for treatment started using at age 11 or younger.
 
In addition, those who start using substances at a younger age are more likely to be using more than 1 substance when they are admitted for treatment. More than 78 percent of those admitted who reported starting to use substances at age 11 or younger also reported abusing 2 or more substances when they started treatment. In contrast, for those who reported starting to use substances at age 25 to 30, less than half as many—30.4 percent—reported abusing 2 or more substances.
 
“Early to late adolescence is considered a critical risk period for the beginning of alcohol and drug use,” said SAMHSA Administrator Pamela S. Hyde. “Knowing the age a person starts the use of a substance can inform treatment facilities so that they can better provide timely and appropriate prevention and treatment programs.”
  
The report did show that treatment admissions involving substance use at age 25 to 30 had the largest proportions of primary use of heroin (35.3 percent) and prescription pain relievers (33.2 percent) of any group assessed.
Source: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, http://www.samhsa.gov/newsroom/advisories/1407174039.aspx
 
The risk of developing drug dependence or abuse is greater for individuals who start using these substances in adolescence or early adolescence than for those who start during adulthood. According to a new report by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), people who start using substances at a young age are at greater risk of needing treatment later.
 
In 2011, 74 percent of people ages 18 to 30 who were admitted for substance abuse treatment started using substances at 17 or younger. The report also showed that 10.2 percent of those admitted for treatment started using at age 11 or younger.
 
In addition, those who start using substances at a younger age are more likely to be using more than 1 substance when they are admitted for treatment. More than 78 percent of those admitted who reported starting to use substances at age 11 or younger also reported abusing 2 or more substances when they started treatment. In contrast, for those who reported starting to use substances at age 25 to 30, less than half as many—30.4 percent—reported abusing 2 or more substances.
 
“Early to late adolescence is considered a critical risk period for the beginning of alcohol and drug use,” said SAMHSA Administrator Pamela S. Hyde. “Knowing the age a person starts the use of a substance can inform treatment facilities so that they can better provide timely and appropriate prevention and treatment programs.”
  
The report did show that treatment admissions involving substance use at age 25 to 30 had the largest proportions of primary use of heroin (35.3 percent) and prescription pain relievers (33.2 percent) of any group assessed.
Source: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, http://www.samhsa.gov/newsroom/advisories/1407174039.aspx
 
The risk of developing drug dependence or abuse is greater for individuals who start using these substances in adolescence or early adolescence than for those who start during adulthood. According to a new report by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), people who start using substances at a young age are at greater risk of needing treatment later.
 
In 2011, 74 percent of people ages 18 to 30 who were admitted for substance abuse treatment started using substances at 17 or younger. The report also showed that 10.2 percent of those admitted for treatment started using at age 11 or younger.
 
In addition, those who start using substances at a younger age are more likely to be using more than 1 substance when they are admitted for treatment. More than 78 percent of those admitted who reported starting to use substances at age 11 or younger also reported abusing 2 or more substances when they started treatment. In contrast, for those who reported starting to use substances at age 25 to 30, less than half as many—30.4 percent—reported abusing 2 or more substances.
 
“Early to late adolescence is considered a critical risk period for the beginning of alcohol and drug use,” said SAMHSA Administrator Pamela S. Hyde. “Knowing the age a person starts the use of a substance can inform treatment facilities so that they can better provide timely and appropriate prevention and treatment programs.”
  
The report did show that treatment admissions involving substance use at age 25 to 30 had the largest proportions of primary use of heroin (35.3 percent) and prescription pain relievers (33.2 percent) of any group assessed.
Source: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, http://www.samhsa.gov/newsroom/advisories/1407174039.aspx

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