Positive News on Kids and Drug Use

One good bid of news coming out of the pandemic is that the percentage of adolescents reporting drug use decreased significantly in 2021. This news comes from the long-running annual Monitoring the Future Survey. The 2021 survey reports significant decreases in the adolescent use of alcohol, marijuana, and vaped nicotine. The study also found that in regards to mental health, students across all groups from eighth to twelfth grade report moderate increases in feelings of boredom, anxiety, depression, loneliness, worry, and difficulty sleeping. While the jury is still out on why drug use decreased at the same time mental health issues increased, we suspect a couple of factors. First, kids were spending less face-to-face time with their friends. Peer influence is a huge factor in drug and alcohol abuse. And second, kids were spending more time with their families. We know that building strong family relationships also builds resilience in kids. We can thank God for these positive developments.