Wasting the Best and Brightest

From CASA:

The report finds that from 1993 to 2005 there has been no real decline in the proportion of students who drink (70 to 68 percent) and binge drink (40 to 40 percent). However, the intensity of excessive drinking and rates of drug abuse have jumped sharply:

  • Between 1993 and 2001 the proportion of students who binge drink frequently is up 16 percent; who drink on 10 or more occasions in a month, up 25 percent; who get drunk at least three times a month, up 26 percent; and who drink to get drunk, up 21 percent.
  • Between 1993 and 2005 the proportion of students abusing prescription drugs increased:
    • 343 percent for opioids like Percocet, Vicodin and OxyContin;
    • 93 percent for abuse of stimulants like Ritalin and Adderall;
    • 450 percent for tranquilizers like Xanax and Valium;
    • 225 percent for sedatives like Nembutal and Seconal.
  • Between 1993 and 2005, the proportion of students who:
    • Use marijuana daily more than doubled to 310,000.
    • Use cocaine, heroin, and other illegal drugs (except marijuana), is up 52 percent to 636,000.

This may be a good argument for better typology within the use/misuse/dependence continuum.