Friday, December 16, 2011

Youth smoking rates falling, but cannabis use a concern: Survey

A survey of teens in Ontario, Canada, sheds light on drug use trends
Fewer Ontario teens are smoking cigarettes,
but binge drinking and cannabis are concerns.

It seems that the number of Ontario teens that are smoking is decreasing, but officials should be concerned about binge drinking and driving while under the influence of cannabis, according to the 2011 Ontario Student Drug Use and Health Survey released by the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH).

The survey included more than 9,000 high school students across Ontario (Grade 7 to 12).

The proportion of students who smoke cigarettes dropped from 12 per cent in the previous 2009 survey to 9 per cent, an all-time low since 1977.

One in six students (16 percent) reported being drunk or high at school a least once in the past year.

The survey found alcohol was the substance used by the largest number of students, as 55 per cent of respondents reported drinking alcohol in the past year. Drinking and driving has dropped by five percentage points since the last survey, suggesting that attitudes towards alcohol use and operating vehicles has changed.

Students were more likely to drive after consuming cannabis than alcohol. Twelve per cent of adolescent drivers reported driving within an hour of using cannabis and 16 per cent of students reported being a passenger in the car of someone who had been using drugs.

Source: Centre for Addiction and Mental Health

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