National Institute of Justice National Institute of Justice. Research. Development. Evaluation. Office of Justice Programs
skip navigationHome  |  Help  |  Contact Us  |  Site Map   |  Glossary
Reliable Research. Real Results. skip navigation
TopicsAll Programs & PracticesAbout CrimeSolutions.govResourcesFAQsNominate
skip navigation
NCJRS Library
The NCJRS Abstracts Database contains abstracts of more than 200,000 criminal justice, juvenile justice, and substance abuse resources housed within the NCJRS Library. Search the NCJRS Abstracts Database for resources on this topic.
Drugs & Substance Abuse Programs at a Glance
Total Number of Programs: 164

See All Programs

Drugs & Substance Abuse Practice Outcomes at a GlanceNew
Total Number of Practices: 7

See All Practices

skip navigation

Drugs & Substance Abuse

In 2012, an estimated 23.9 million Americans aged 12 and older were current (past month) illicit drug users; this represents 9.2% of the population aged 12 or older.[1] Illicit drugs include marijuana, cocaine, heroin, hallucinogens, inhalants, and prescription drugs used for non-medical purposes.

Fast Facts

  • Rates of illicit drug use in 2012 were highest among young adults aged 18 to 25 (21.3%) as compared to youth ages 12-17 (9.5%) and adults 26 or older (7.0%).[2]

  • In 2012, 2.8% of youths ages 12-17 were current (past month) users of prescription-type psychotherapeutics, compared to 5.3% of young adults (age 18 to 25) and 2.1% of those ages 26 or older.[3]

  • In 2012, an estimated 11.2% of people 12 or older drove under the influence (DUI) of alcohol at least once in the past year.[4]

  • Nearly one quarter (23%) of persons aged 12 or older in 2012 were binge alcohol users in the 30 days prior to the survey, which translates to about 59.7 million people.[5]

  • In 2012, approximately 75.9% of youth aged 12 to 17 reported seeing drug or alcohol prevention messages outside of school and 75.0% reported seeing or hearing prevention messages at school.[6]


Practices New

OJP Publications

Exploitation of Very Small Particles To Enhance the Probative Value of Carpet Fibers, NIJ-Sponsored, 2015
PDF Order Photocopy

Drug Offenders in Federal Prisons: Estimates of Characteristics Based on Linked Data, BJS, October 2015

Federal Sentencing Disparity: 2005-2012, BJS, October 2015

Program Performance Report: Residential Substance Abuse Treatment (RSAT) Program, January-December 2013, BJA-Sponsored, August 2015

University of Kentucky Study Demonstrates the Effectiveness of Mandatory Enrollment in PDMPs, BJA-Sponsored, July 2015

More OJP Publications

Questions and Answers

What steps can colleges and universities take to prevent alcohol abuse on campus?
See Answer

How many drug offenses are handled by juvenile courts in the United States?
See Answer

What is GHB?
See Answer

More Q&A

Related Resources