National Survey on Drug Use and Health

The National Survey on Drug Use and Health is conducted yearly and includes comments and interviews from over 60,000 individuals. Those chosen to participate in the survey are required to be at least 12 years of age. The purpose of the survey is to provide state and national level data on the current use of illicit drugs, tobacco and alcohol.

Most survey participants take the survey in their own home. The survey is conducted by a personal interviewer and the participant inputs their responses on a laptop or computer. The National Survey on Drug Use and Health organization makes a strong effort to ensure that all groups of people are represented in this survey. This includes doing intense research to select specific communities and households. Doing this is the only effective way to gather data that represents all regions of the country.

The data that is gathered from this survey helps to identify specific trends which includes how many people are currently using tobacco based products. This information is often used by tobacco companies and non-profit health organizations. Tobacco companies use the data to help them create more effective marketing campaigns. While non-profit organizations use the data to help them determine where the highest concentration of tobacco users live.

The survey also helps to track the use of alcohol and illegal drugs and identify trends of users. Treatment facilities from across the country use this information to help them better understand how to treat drug and alcohol addiction. They also use the information to help them know where to allocate their funding dollars.

Once all the information from the survey is analyzed, it will reveal which groups of people are more at risk of becoming smokers and addicted to drugs and alcohol. This type of information is very beneficial in helping communities and local organizations be more proactive in preventing drug and alcohol abuse, especially among teens.  

In addition to tobacco, alcohol and illegal drugs, there is also a large percentage of people in this country today who have become addicted to prescription medications. This type of addiction can be hard to treat because it is not easy to identify. There are thousands of people who are taking extra doses of prescription medicine today and their family and friends don't know it. By the time they do find out in most cases, the drugs have already caused a significant amount of mental and physical damage.

To learn more about the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, go to


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