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Teen Drug Use Is As High As A Kite

It turns out today’s teens aren’t so much high on life as they are high on alcohol and drugs.

The 22nd annual Foundation Partnership Attitude Tracking Study (PATS) is out today, and it reports a 67% increase in teen Ecstasy use over the last year as well as a 22% increase in teen marijuana use.

The national study to measure teen drug and alcohol use surveyed 2,544 U.S. high school teens (grades 9-12) and 831 parents.

The findings are fairly staggering. Almost three-fourths of the teen surveyed (73%) say their friends drink alcohol at least once per week and nearly half (45%) don’t see the problem in getting drunk every day.

Prescription drugs are also popular with today’s teens. A full 23% are using a prescription drug that aren’t prescribed to them. Crack/cocaine is also whack, with 9% of teens using it over the last year.

But let’s get back to drinking! Nearly one-third (32%) of teens drink "to forget their troubles." Almost one-quarter (24%) say alcohol helps them "deal with problems at home." One-fifth (20%) of teens drink to "deal with the pressures and stress of school."

Okay, employers: you know where I’m going here. Substitute "home" and "school" with "work," and get a preview of what workplace drinking and drug use surveys could look like in 2020. A bit scary, eh?

The most disturbing aspect of the survey: Nearly 30% of the parents think they can’t do anything to stop their kids from getting drunk. The kids must know this, because 32% of them said their parents don’t care if they drink beer. And we thought tiger moms were bad.

It's estimated 9 million U.S. teens are currently in need of treatment for alcohol and drug abuse.

Where will this all lead? Will today's teens straighten up and fly right by the time they enter the workplace? Who knows, but one can already hear the conversations taking place a decade from now as managers/a.k.a. quasi-parents step up to deal with the workplace ramifications. "Where's Justin? Didn't he show up this morning? Why not? Did anyone call his house? What do you mean he's not answering the phone? I need those numbers NOW because I have to give a client presentation in 45 minutes! Send him to my office when he shows up." Now that doesn’t sound like a fun party for anyone.

You can read the full report here.


  1. very informative post, Chris! thanks for this sharing! Drug use is now a major problem even in the workplace. Because of this reason, more and more employers conduct random faa drug testing in the workplace. These drug tests protect both employers and employees.


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