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Cocaine use is declining among emerging adults in the United States: Trends by college enrollment.

Addict Behav. 2019 09;96:35-38

Authors: Schneider KE, Johnson JK, Johnson RM

BACKGROUND: The difference in cocaine use between student and non-student emerging adults is not well understood, despite the longstanding assumption that college is protective against use.
OBJECTIVE: To describe trends in cocaine use among emerging adults by college enrollment.
METHODS: Using cross-sectional, nationally-representative data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (2002-2016), we estimated the prevalence of four cocaine use indicators by year among emerging adults (ages 18-22) and stratified by college enrollment. We tested for linear and quadratic trends over time.
RESULTS: From 2002 to 2016, 11.7% reported lifetime cocaine use, 5.8% reported past 12-month use, 1.7% reported past 30-day use, and 1% had a use disorder in the past 12-months. We observed significant linear decreases in all four use indicators over time (Lifetime: β = -0.20, Past 12-months: β = -0.17, Past 30-days: β = -0.22, Past 12-months disorder: β = -0.37). Students had lower rates of cocaine use than non-students, although prevalence estimates were more similar between groups for past 12-month (Students:5.3%, 95% CI:5.0-5.5; Non-students:6.3%, 95% CI:6.1-6.5) and past 30-day use (Students:1.6%, 95% CI:1.4-1.7; Non-students:1.8%, 95% CI:1.7-1.9) than for lifetime use (Students:9.4%, 95% CI:9.1-9.7; Non-students:13.8%, 95% CI:13.5-14.1).
CONCLUSIONS: Cocaine use has declined among emerging adults since the early 2000s. The college environment appears compensate for early life differences in cocaine use risk between students and non-students, closing the gap between groups for recent indicators of cocaine use. Given the severe health consequences associated with cocaine use, more public health attention to this issue is needed.

PMID: 31030177 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]

Source: ncbi 2

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Categories: Medical

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