Welfare Indicators and Risk Factors: Thirteenth Report to Congress. Employment and Work Risk Factor 5. Adult Alcohol and Substance Abuse

03/01/2014

Figure WORK 5. Percentage of Adults Who Used Cocaine or Marijuana or Abused Alcohol by Age: 2011

(In percent)

Figure WORK 5. Percentage of Adults Who Used Cocaine or Marijuana or Abused Alcohol by Age: 2011

Note: Cocaine and marijuana use is defined as use during the past month. “Binge alcohol use” is defined as drinking five or more drinks on the same occasion on at least one day in the past 30 days. “Heavy alcohol use” is defined as drinking five or more drinks on the same occasion on each of five or more days in the past 30 days; all heavy alcohol users are also binge alcohol users.

Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 2011.


  • Figure WORK 5 shows the percentage of adults who used cocaine, the percentage who used marijuana, and the percentage who abused alcohol by age group in 2011.
  • Adults 18 to 25 years of age were more likely than older adults to report cocaine, marijuana, binge alcohol or heavy alcohol use in the prior month. For example, 19.0 percent reported using marijuana in the past month during 2011, compared with 10.2 percent of adults 26 to 34 years of age and 3.6 percent of adults 35 years and over.
  • The percentage of adults reporting binge alcohol use was larger than the percentages for all other reported behaviors across all age groups shown.
  • Table WORK 5 shows the percentage of adults who used cocaine or marijuana or abused alcohol from 1999 through 2011.
  • Marijuana use has been trending upward across all age groups since 1999. Levels of cocaine use have remained fairly stable across all age groups over time. Since 1999, heavy alcohol use has decreased for adults ages 18 to 25 years, but increased for adults ages 26 to 34 years.

Table WORK 5. Percentage of Adults Who Used Cocaine or Marijuana or Abused Alcohol by Age: 1999-2011

  Cocaine Marijuana Binge Alcohol Use Heavy Alcohol Use
Ages
18-25
Ages
26-34

Ages 35 & over

Ages
18-25
Ages
26-34

Ages 35 & over

Ages
18-25
Ages
26-34

Ages 35 & over

Ages
18-25
Ages Ages 35 & over
1999 1.7 1.2 0.4 14.2 5.4 2.2 37.9 29.3 16.0 13.3 7.5 4.2
2000 1.4 0.8 0.3 13.6 5.9 2.3 37.8 30.3 16.4 12.8 7.6 4.1
2001 1.9 1.1 0.5 16.0 6.8 2.4 38.7 30.1 16.2 13.6 7.8 4.2
2002 2.0 1.2 0.6 17.3 7.7 3.1 40.9 33.1 18.6 14.9 9.0 5.2
2003 2.2 1.5 0.6 17.0 8.4 3.0 41.6 32.9 18.1 15.1 9.4 5.1
2004 2.1 1.4 0.5 16.1 8.3 3.1 41.2 32.2 18.5 15.1 9.4 5.3
2005 2.6 1.3 0.6 16.6 8.6 3.0 41.9 32.9 18.3 15.3 9.6 4.7
2006 2.2 1.7 0.6 16.3 8.5 3.2 42.2 34.2 18.4 15.6 10.0 5.1
2007 1.7 1.4 0.6 16.4 7.9 3.0 41.8 35.1 18.9 14.7 9.7 5.3
2008 1.5 1.5 0.4 16.5 8.8 3.2 41.0 36.4 18.8 14.5 10.6 5.3
2009 1.4 1.0 0.5 18.1 9.6 3.4 41.7 36.3 19.2 13.7 10.1 5.3
2010 1.5 1.1 0.3 18.5 10.5 3.4 40.6 36.5 18.6 13.6 10.3 5.1
2011 1.4 0.8 0.3 19.0 10.2 3.6 39.8 35.7 18.4 12.1 10.5 4.6

Note: Cocaine and marijuana use is defined as use during the past month. “Binge alcohol use” is defined as drinking five or more drinks on the same occasion on at least one day in the past 30 days. “Heavy alcohol use” is defined as drinking five or more drinks on the same occasion on each of five or more days in the past 30 days; all heavy alcohol users are also binge alcohol users.

Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 2000-2011.

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