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#YouthNow: The Situation of Global Youth on Substance Abuse

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The UN Envoy on Youth conducted the #YouthNow campaign to ascertain the situation of Global Youth on Substance abuse. Below are some of the findings:

Globally, one in every 10 girls aged 13-15 years and one in every 5 boys aged 13-15 years use tobacco. [WHO, 2014, http://bit.ly/1SLtkEI]

Alcohol use starts at a young age: 14% of adolescent girls and 18% of boys aged 13–15 years in low- and middle-income countries are reported to use alcohol. [WHO, 2011, http://bit.ly/1Gr7bUG]
Initiation of drug use occurs typically during late teenage and early adulthood. [UNDOC, 2014, http://bit.ly/1sILm15]
At least half of adolescents never experiment with drugs, and only some 20% of them report past month-use of cannabis. [UNDOC, 2014, http://bit.ly/1sILm15]
Cannabis remains the most common illicit substance used among young people. [UNDOC, 2014, http://bit.ly/1sILm15]
Cannabis use can compromise school performance, especially in math. Heavy regular marijuana use during teenage years can lead to an IQ drop of up to 8 points. [UNDOC, 2012, http://bit.ly/1Cu01NJ]
Teenage brain is still developing and specially vulnerable to substance use. The earlier substance use starts, the bigger is the risk of it leading to substance use disorder. [UNDOC, 2014, http://bit.ly/1sILm15]
Warm and supportive parenting, access to schooling, and resilient mental health are some among the most important factors protecting youth from substance use and related disorders. [UNODC, http://bit.ly/1Niz6Lb]
The vast majority of tobacco users worldwide began when they were adolescents. [WHO, 2011, http://bit.ly/1Gr7bUG]
Approximately half of young tobacco users will die prematurely as a result of tobacco use. [WHO, 2011, http://bit.ly/1Gr7bUG]
Alcohol abuse is a primary cause of injuries (including those due to road traffic accidents), violence (especially domestic violence) and premature deaths. [WHO, 2011, http://bit.ly/1Gr7bUG]

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