Know! Your Child's Risk
Statistics You Should Know!
A recent survey shows that prevention efforts, including those of Know! and other programs that can be found on the DFAA web site, are producing positive results. Yet young people continue to be exposed to alcohol, tobacco and other drugs at an alarmingly early age.
Nearly 23% of 8th grade students in the state of Ohio report having smoked cigarettes, 30% report having consumed beer and 13% report having smoked marijuana, all within the past year. (Ohio PRIDE Survey, Ohio Department of Alcohol and Drug Addiction Services. 2002).
Significant Use by Central Ohio 8th Graders
Usage of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs is still relatively low among 6th and 7th graders. However, by the time students reach 8th grade, a significant number of them have begun experimenting with these substances. The 2006 Primary Prevention Awareness, Attitude and Use Survey (PPAAUS) conducted by The Safe and Drug-Free Schools Consortium, revealed that:
- The average age of first use of alcohol and tobacco is 11;
- 1% of sixth graders and 5% of seventh and eighth graders drink regularly (at least once a month);
- 2% of those surveyed smoke tobacco at least once a month;
- 0.4% of sixth graders and 1% of seventh and eighth graders smoke tobacco daily;
- The average age of first use of marijuana is 12; and
- 0.6% of sixth graders and 4% of seventh and eighth graders smoke marijuana once a month or more.
Substance Use Places Children at Risk
- The younger someone starts to use alcohol, tobacco and drugs, the more likely he or she is to become addicted and develop problems associated with such use.
- Young people who use alcohol and drugs also are more likely to become victims or perpetrators of violence, engage in unplanned and unprotected sex, experience school failure, and be seriously injured from driving or engaging in other risky behavior while impaired.
- Young people who use tobacco are more likely than others to drink heavily later or use illegal drugs. If we can successfully keep our young people from smoking, we may help prevent other drug use.
For example, when polled, the number of parents who thought their children had tried marijuana was only about 20%. This statistic represented only one-half the number of teens who said they had actually tried the drug (2004 Partnership Attitude Tracking Study. Partnership for a Drug-Free America).