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49 million Americans reported substance use disorder in 2022

New HHS Study Released

Nearly 49 million people in the US ages 12 and older – more than 1 in 6 – reported a substance use disorder in 2022, according to survey data released by SAMHSA. The annual snapshot of behavioral health and substance use nationwide shows that 25% of Americans aged 12 years old or older used illicit substances in 2022 (70 million people), an increase of approximately 15% from 2021.

Key findings on substance use include:

  • Data shows that cannabis is the most commonly used illicit substance in the United States, with increases in cannabis use across every age group — including those older than age 65. Past-year cannabis use among anyone over age 12 increased from 53.1 million in 2021 to 61.9 million in 2022, a rise of 16.5 percent.

  • Over 6 million Americans older than age 12 reported that they had an opioid use disorder.

  • The survey revealed that roughly 10 million Americans are misusing stimulants, including cocaine (5.3 million), prescription stimulants (4.3 million) and methamphetamine (2.7 million).

  • Alcohol remains the most-used substance, with about 137 million people reporting they consumed alcohol in the past month and 45% reporting binge drinking (five or more drinks on the same occasion for men and four for women). Nearly 12% reported that they were past-month "heavy" drinkers.

  • In the past year, about 1 in 4 people received substance use treatment in the past year (24.0 percent or 13.1 million).

  • 71.0 percent of adults considered themselves to be in recovery or to have recovered from their drug or alcohol use problem (21.3 million people).

Key findings on mental health include:

  • The survey data also showed that 59.3 million Americans — nearly 1 in 4 adults older than age 18 — reported they had a mental illness in the past year.

  • Thirteen million US adults and 3.4 million adolescents had serious thoughts of suicide, and 1.6 million adults and 953,000 adolescents reported attempting suicide in the past year.

  • The survey also found that nearly a quarter of adults had a mental illness, including 1 in 12 who experienced both mental illness and substance use disorder. About 1 in 5 adolescents ages 12 to 17 – nearly 5 million – had had a major depressive episode in the past year.

The new data is based on responses to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, a nationally representative survey conducted annually by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. The Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy, Rahul Gupta, MD, MPH, MBA, shared during a call with reporters: "There are currently more than 48 million Americans struggling with substance use disorders, and three out of every four are not getting the treatment they need ... We need to close this gap, and we need to make sure that everyone who needs treatment can get it."

Access the entire 2022 NSDUH Annual Nation Report here.


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