Changes in Alcohol and Marijuana Abstinence, Co-Use, and Use Disorders Among Young Adults
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study, researchers analyzed changes over time in past-year alcohol and
marijuana abstinence, co-use, alcohol use disorder, and marijuana use disorder
among young adults in the United States as a function of college status. Between
2002 and 2018, there was an annual increase in past-year alcohol abstinence
among young adults. There was an annual increase in marijuana use from 2002 to
2018 without an increase in marijuana use disorder for all young adults.
Past-year alcohol use disorder decreased annually, while co-use of alcohol and
marijuana increased annually between 2002 and 2018 among all young adults. Young
adults who reported co-use of alcohol and marijuana or met criteria for alcohol
use disorder and/or marijuana use disorder accounted for 82.9 percent of young
adults with prescription drug use disorder and 85.1 percent of those with
illicit drug use disorder. More than three-fourths of those with both alcohol
use disorder and marijuana use disorder reported past-year prescription drug
use (78.2 percent) and illicit drug use (77.7 percent); 62.2 percent reported
prescription drug misuse. Findings suggest that colleges and communities in the
United States should create and maintain supportive resources for young adults
as the substance use landscape changes; specifically, as alcohol abstinence,
marijuana use, and co-use increase.
This paper, “Assessment
of Changes in Alcohol and Marijuana Abstinence, Co-Use, and Use Disorders Among
US Young Adults From 2002 to 2018,” was funded by the National Institute on Drug
Abuse and published in the journal JAMA Pediatrics.