The Problem of Drug Abuse

Alcohol and Other Drugs:


Marijuana is by far the most used illegal drug among adults, with almost 7 percent reporting use at some time during the past year. Any other single illegal drug, besides marijuana, was used by less than one percent of Minnesota adults.
  • The use of marijuana in the past year is reported more by adult males than females and by young person’s 18-24 more than any other age group.
  • About 41 percent of Minnesota adults reported any illegal drug use in their lifetime, and 7.2 percent reported illegal drug use at some time during the past year.
  • Minnesotans that self-report being American Indian and Multiple Race/Other are the most likely to report past year use of marijuana, more than any other race/ethnicity group.
  • Only 2.1 percent of Minnesota adults reported using any illegal drugs besides marijuana at some time during the last year.
  • Pain relievers were the most commonly reported prescription drug used for non-medical purposes in the past year (2.2 percent) followed by tranquilizer and sedatives (1.0 percent and .9 percent respectively).
  • Men are more likely than women to report non-medical use of prescription drugs.


Marijuana is the most used illegal drug (the most used drugs are alcohol and tobacco) among Minnesota students. Almost one in three 12th graders and one in six 9th graders have reported using marijuana in the past year. The use of other illicit drugs, besides marijuana, among students in 2007 ranged from 1.2 percent to 6.8 percent.

  • Methamphetamine use has been declining since 2001, when it was first asked about. In 2007, 1.5 percent of 9th graders and 2.2 percent of 12th graders reported using methamphetamines.
  • 12th graders report using drugs more than 9th graders in all categories except inhalants, where 9th graders report using slightly more than 12th graders.
  • Among adolescents, when there is a difference, males report using illicit drugs more than females.
  • Young people (age 18-24) are more likely to report use of non-medical use of prescription drugs than adults.

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Updated Wednesday, May 14, 2014 at 12:22PM