Teen Heroin Statistics [Infographic]
By: Lakeview Health Staff
Published: October 14, 2016

The opiate-based drug heroin is incredibly addictive, and it’s well known as one of the hardest drug addictions to break. While all demographics are susceptible to heroin addiction, teens are a particularly vulnerable group. Examining teen heroin statistics can reveal just how problematic heroin use is for young people in the United States.

A Shocking 3% of Teens Have Tried Heroin

Compared to many other drugs, heroin isn’t as commonly used by American teenagers. In the USA, just 3% of teenagers surveyed admit to trying heroin. However, there are some questions about the validity of these numbers. Only those teens who were in school were surveyed, which means that those who were absent may be more likely to have tried heroin.

Heroin Use is on the Rise Among Young Adults

Heroin use across the United States is on the rise, with nearly all demographics seeing spikes in numbers of users. However, the category of young adult, age 18 to 25, is seeing the greatest upward trend. According to a US News and World Report article, heroin use among young adult Americans grew by a staggering 109% between 2002 and 2013. Compared to those over the age of 26, a group whose use only increased by 58%, this is an alarming statistic.

Clear Correlation Between Prescription Painkillers and Heroin

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, most teens who use heroin also use at least one other drug. Of particular note is that one 2008-2009 study found that, of young injection drug users interviewed, 86% had used opioid pain relievers nonmedically prior to using heroin. Clearly, there is a bigger issue at work, which is the danger of people transitioning from one opiate to the next.

Teen Males Use Heroin More Often Than Females

Not all teenagers have the same rate of heroin use in the United States. While male high schoolers have a 3.9% chance of using heroin, only 1.8% of female students try heroin.

More Than Half of all High Schoolers Think It’s Easy to Get Heroin

One of the most worrying facts about teen heroin use is that a staggering 50% of all American high school students think heroin is easy to get. Because of the perceived ease of availability, it’s more important than ever before for parents and students to be completely aware and educated about the dangers of heroin, as well as its addictive properties. Teen heroin statistics can be scary, but even those struggling with addiction can get help and transform their lives completely. At Lakeview Health in Jacksonville, Florida, the right program can get you or the teen in your life back on track. Call 866-704-7692 to learn more and begin the journey to recovery today.