Statistics about Drug Use

Substance misuse is a constantly shifting public health concern. As such, it’s vital to stay on top of the latest research and data. New trends and challenges emerge over time and the use of specific substances can ebb and flow. On this page, we’ve compiled commonly used data about substance misuse from the University of Michigan, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the National Institute on Drug Abuse, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Below these tables, you’ll find links to reputable sources for further data.

Table of Contents

Past Month Illicit Drug Use, by Age

The data below come from the 2019 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, a publication of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. 

All persons 12 and up12–1718 and older
Any illicit drug13.0%8.7%13.4%
Any illicit drug other than marijuana3.4%2.4%3.5%
Marijuana11.5%7.4%11.9%
Cocaine0.7%0.1%0.8%
Heroin0.2%Unreported0.2%
Hallucinogens0.7%0.6%0.7%
Methamphetamine0.4%0.0%0.5%
Inhalants0.3%0.9%0.2%

Past Month Alcohol, Tobacco, Pain Relievers, Stimulants, Tranquilizers, and Sedative Use, by Age

The data below come from the 2019 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, a publication of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. 

 

All persons 12 and up12–1718 and up
Alcohol50.8%9.4%54.9%
Binge drinking23.9%4.9%25.8%
Tobacco21.1%3.8%22.8%
Pain Relievers1.0%0.7%1.1%
Stimulants0.6%0.5%0.6%
Tranquilizers and Sedatives0.7%0.5%0.7%

Addiction, by Age

The data below come from the 2019 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, a publication of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. 

 

20192018201720162015
12 or Older7.4%7.4%7.2%7.5%7.8%
12 to 174.5%3.7%4.0%4.3%5.0%
18 to 2514.1%15.0%14.8%15.1%15.3%
26 or Older6.7%6.6%6.4%6.6%6.9%

Costs of Substance Use, by Substance

The data below come from the National Institute on Drug Abuse, which is part of the National Institutes of Health. You can access this data from their website.

Health CareOverall
Tobacco$168 billion$300 billion
Alcohol$27 billion$249 billion
Illicit Drugs$11 billion$193 billion
Prescription Drugs$26 billion$78.5 billion

Overall costs include costs related to crime, lost work productivity, and healthcare. 

Adolescent Vaping in the Past 30 Days by 8th, 10th, and 12th graders, by Substance

The data below come from the Monitoring the Future Survey, a national survey of substance use conducted by the Institute for Social Research at the University of Michigan. You can access this report from their website.

201920182017
Any Vaping22.5%19.2%12.0%
Nicotine Vaping18.1%14.2%7.5%
Marijuana Vaping10.1%5.7%3.6%
Vaping Just Flavoring9.6%11.5%8.0%

Overdose Deaths from 2009 to 2018

The data below come from the National Center for Health Statistics, which is part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. You can access this data from their website.

2018201720162015201420132012201120102009
All Overdose Deaths67,36770,23763,63252,40447,05543,98241,50241,34038,32937,004
Any Opioid46,80247,60042,24933,09128,64725,05023,16422,78421,08820,422
Prescription Opioids14,97517,02917,08715,28114,83814,14514,24015,14014,58313,523
Fentanyl and Other Synthetic Narcotics31,33528,46619,4139,5805,5443,1052,6282,6663,0072,946
Heroin14,66613,94210,3756,7845,4154,9444,4044,6814,1834,350
Stimulants, Including Methamphetamine12,67610,3337,5425,7164,2983,6272,6352,2661,8541,632
Benzodiazepines10,72411,53710,6848,7917,9456,9736,5246,8726,4975,567
Antidepressants5,0645,2694,8124,8944,7684,4584,2594,1133,8893,768

The data below come from the National Institute on Drug Abuse, which is part of the National Institutes of Health. You can access this data from their website.