Even as teens cut back on their use of tobacco, binge drinking and methamphetamines they are smoking marijuana in increasing numbers, according to a new report conducted by the University of Michigan for the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). 20.6 percent of high school seniors surveyed said they had smoked pot within the last month, still far less than peak levels in the 1990s.
White House drug czar Gil Kerlikowske said that the "continued erosion in youth attitudes and behavior toward substance abuse should give pause to all parents and policy-makers" as lax attitudes about so-called “gateway drugs” could lead to harder drugs and addiction treatment in the future.
However, there was good news in the report. The type of binge drinking that typically signifies the need for treatment in an alcohol abuse center continued to decline. There is also less of a need for teens to be treated in an addiction center for Ritalin abuse, as use of the ADHD drug as a stimulant also decreased.