Monday, July 16, 2012

Alcohol Use In High School Is The Gateway Drug To Illegal Harder Drugs: HS Students Who Drink Alcohol Are 16 Times More Likely To Use Illegal Drugs

From "Study Shows Long-Term Drug Abuse Starts With Alcohol" on ScienceBlog:
The study appears in the August issue of the Journal of School Health.

[Adam] Barry, [an assistant professor and researcher in the University of Florida College of Health and Human Performance] used a nationally representative sample of high school seniors, evaluating data collected through the annual Monitoring the Future study. The study, conducted by the Institute for Social Research at the University of Michigan
Barry’s study focused on data collected from 14,577 high school seniors from 120 public and private schools in the United States.
In addition, the drug use documented found that substance use typically begins with the most socially acceptable drugs, such as alcohol and cigarettes, then proceeds to marijuana use and finally to other illegal, harder drugs. Moreover, the study showed that students who used alcohol exhibited a significantly greater likelihood — up to 16 times — of licit and illicit substance use.

“These findings add further credence to the literature identifying alcohol as the gateway drug to other substance use,” he said. [Emphasis Added.]

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