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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California
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Substance abuse up among teens

A new study confirms a backwards trend in teen drug use

Five alcoholic drinks in a day? No problem, according to teens surveyed in a study released Wednesday by The Partnership at Drugfree.organd Metlife Foundation.

Substance abuse reportedly rose among teens in the past year, according to the study.

Ecstasy use among teens increased 67 percent and marijuana use increased by 22 percent over the past year. In 2008, ecstasy use was at 6 percent and rose to 10 percent in 2010. The percentage of teens who reported using marijuana increased from 32 percent in 2008 to 39 percent in 2010, a disturbing trend according to the website. 

The study reports teens view heavy drinking as less risky than the use of other substances. Forty-five percent of teens said they didn’t see a ‘great risk’ in drinking five or more drinks containing alcohol nearly every day.

The average age of teens that reported drinking in the study was 14-years-old.

Teens said the top reasons for drinking were for social inclusivity and general enjoyment.

Anonymous questionnaires were filled out by 2,544 teens during a three-month period between March and June of 2010.

The margin of error for the study is reportedly plus or minus 3.6 percentage points. 

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