The Kentucky Needs Assessment 2005 Adolescent Household Survey Report uses household survey information to develop estimates of how many adolescents in Kentucky use nicotine, alcohol, and illicit drugs and how many youth need treatment.
Lifetime Use Estimates
For this study 1,607 adolescent Kentuckians between the ages of 12 to 17 were interviewed between June and September 2005. The study provided data on the percent of youth in this sample who reported using various substances including nicotine. These percentages were used to develop estimates of youth who have ever used selected substances, who currently use, and who are likely to need treatment.
An estimated 74,315 (22.0%) adolescent Kentuckians smoked at least one cigarette and, of those, 26.8% smoked more than 100 cigarettes in their lifetime. Approximately one-third of adolescents who smoked a cigarette have done so in the past 30 days. An estimated 24,213 (7.1%) adolescent Kentuckians have used smokeless tobacco. While similar percentages of adolescent males and females smoked cigarettes (22.8% and 21.1%, respectively), adolescent males were more than five times as likely to have ever used smokeless tobacco than females.
An estimated 98,186 (28.8%) adolescent Kentuckians drank alcohol and an estimated 30,520 (9.0%) adolescents drank in the past 30 days. Males (29.7%) were slightly more likely to drink alcohol than females (27.9%). Of adolescents who used alcohol, males drank more frequently (1.9 vs. 1.5 days per month) and were more likely to have binged on alcohol than females (36.2% vs. 23.0%, respectively). Age was strongly related to the use of alcohol, characterized by large increases of lifetime alcohol use from 13 years old (8.7%) to 14 years old (27.4%) and from 15 years old (30.3%) to 16 years old (49.1%).
An estimated 31,423 (9.3%) adolescent Kentuckians used marijuana and an estimated 3% of adolescents used marijuana in the past 30 days. While males (9.8%) and females (8.7%) had similar rates of lifetime use, large differences were found between age groups. Less than 1% of 12 and 13 year olds used marijuana, whereas 8.9% of 14 and 15 year olds and 18.3% of 16 and 17 year olds used marijuana in their lifetime.
An estimated 3,698 (1.1%) adolescent Kentuckians used cocaine and very few (0.2%) reported using cocaine in the past 30 days. Equal percentages of male and female adolescents reported cocaine use and 16 and 17 year olds (2.4%) were more likely to report use than younger adolescents (1%).
An estimated 2,689 (0.8%) adolescent Kentuckians used stimulants other than cocaine (e.g., amphetamine or methamphetamine) and only 0.1% of adolescents report other stimulant use in the past 30 days. Adolescent males were slightly more likely to report other stimulant use (0.9%) in their lifetime than females (0.7%) and 16 and 17 year olds (1.4%) were more likely than other age groups (1.1%) to report lifetime use.
An estimated 4,476 (1.3%) adolescent Kentuckians used oxycodone illicitly. Twice as many adolescent males (2,868) are estimated to have ever illicitly used oxycodone than females (1,608). Three percent of 16 and 17 year olds report illicit use of oxycodone whereas smaller percentages of use were found in younger groups (1.2%).
An estimated 6,982 (2.1%) adolescent Kentuckians used opiates other than oxycodone illicitly. A larger percentage of adolescent males (2.5%) than females (1.7%) reported lifetime use of other opiates. While very few 12 and 13 year olds reported other opiate use (0.7%), higher rates of use were found in the 14 and 15 year old age group (5.0%) and the 16 and 17 year old age group (7.1%).
An estimated 7,439 (2.2%) adolescent Kentuckians used sedatives. Unlike most other drugs, a larger percentage of adolescent females (2.3%) reported lifetime sedative use relative to males (2.1%). A large increase for sedative use was found between 13 and 14 year olds (1.8%) and the 16 and 17 year olds (4.8%).
An estimated 3,044 (0.9%) adolescent Kentuckians used hallucinogens. A higher percentage of adolescent males (1.1%) than females (0.7%) reported lifetime hallucinogen use, and a higher percentage of 16 and 17 year olds (1.7%) reported lifetime hallucinogen use than other age groups (< 1.2%).
An estimated 2,996 (0.9%) adolescent Kentuckians used club drugs. A slightly higher percentage of adolescent males (1.0%) than females (0.8%) reported the use of club drugs. A higher percentage of 16 and 17 year olds (1.6%) reported club drug use than younger age groups (1.2%).
An estimated 5,800 (1.7%) adolescent Kentuckians used inhalants. A higher percentage of adolescent males reported lifetime inhalant use as compared to females (1.9% and 1.5%, respectively). One percent of 12 and 13 year olds reported lifetime inhalant use, whereas approximately 2% of the older age groups reported inhalant use in their lifetime.
An estimated 7,036 (2.0%) adolescent Kentuckians used a substance for the purpose of achieving intoxication other than those previously highlighted (e.g., over-the-counter cold and cough remedies). Like sedatives, a higher percentage of females (2.1%) reported lifetime use of other substances than males (1.9%). An increase in the percentage of adolescents who ever used other substances was found between the 14 and 15 year old age group (1.7%) and the 16 and 17 year old age group (4.0%).
Any Illicit Drug
An estimated 37,547 (11.1%) adolescent Kentuckians used an illicit drug, excluding alcohol and nicotine. Almost 8% of adolescents report illicit drug use in the past year and 3.3% report illicit drug use in the past 30 days. A slightly higher percentage of adolescent males (11.3%) reported lifetime illicit drug use as compared to females (10.8%). A relationship between age and illicit drug use was found with 2.6% of 12 to 13 year olds, 10.9% of 14 to 15 year olds, and 20.1% of 16 and 17 year olds reporting lifetime illicit drug use.
Alcohol Abuse and Dependence
An estimated 21,526 (6.3%) adolescent Kentuckians met DSM-IV-TR criteria for alcohol abuse and/or dependence in their lifetime. A higher percentage of female adolescents (6.9%) met alcohol use disorder criteria than males (5.8%).
Drug Abuse and Dependence
An estimated 9,617 (2.8%) adolescent Kentuckians met DSM-IV-TR criteria for drug abuse and/or dependence in their lifetime. A higher percentage of female adolescents (3.0%) met drug use disorder criteria than males (2.6%).
Substance Abuse Treatment Utilization
An estimated 4,027 (1.2%) adolescent Kentuckians received treatment or counseling in their lifetime for their use of alcohol and/or drugs.
Substance Abuse Treatment Need
An estimated 25,793 (7.6%) adolescent Kentuckians need substance abuse treatment. More adolescent females need substance abuse treatment than males (13,177 vs. 12,616, respectively). Almost two-thirds (62.7%) of adolescents who need substance abuse treatment are between 16 and 17 years of age.
Attitudes and Beliefs
As adolescent Kentuckians grow older, there is an increasing belief that their use of cigarettes, alcohol and marijuana will make them be “cool.” This was noted for alcohol particularly and when survey respondents were users of these substances. Perceptions of the risk associated with substance use were high, especially among females and younger adolescents. Peer influence was also found to be strongly related to adolescent drug and alcohol use. Most adolescents believe their parents would think it “very wrong” if an adolescent used nicotine, alcohol or marijuana.
Comparison to the 1998 Kentucky Adolescent Household Survey
When the 2005 and 1998 Kentucky Adolescent Household Surveys are compared, there are notable declines in the use of nicotine, alcohol and illicit drugs. From 1998 to 2005, the percentage of adolescent Kentuckians who have smoked a cigarette decreased by one half (44.3% vs. 22.0%). In 1998, adolescent females were more likely to have smoked (49.8%) than males (39.1%) but female adolescents (21.1%) now are less likely to report smoking a cigarette than males (22.8%). The use of smokeless tobacco also declined from 12.6% in 1998 to 7.0% in 2005. Half as many male adolescents (11.8%) report ever using smokeless tobacco in 2005 as compared to males in 1998 (21.9%). Lifetime alcohol use has also declined from 1998 (40.8%) to 2005 (28.8%). Like cigarette use, more adolescent females used alcohol than males in 1998 but a smaller percentage of females used alcohol than males in 2005. The overall lifetime use of illicit drugs also declined from 1998 (14.9%) to 2005 (10.8%) but not as sharply as the declines in nicotine and alcohol use.
Variability in substance use and treatment need was found across State regions. The lifetime use of cigarettes was higher in the West and East regions (both 24.5%) than for the more populated North-Central region (19.4%) and Jefferson County (20.4%). Alcohol use was lowest in the East region (25.0%) and highest in the West region (30.7%). Lifetime illicit drug use was highest in Jefferson County (14.6%) and lowest in the East region (7.7%). Substance abuse treatment need ranged from a low of 6.5% in the East region to a high of 9.0% in the West region.
2005 Report Section Quick Links
Executive Summary * Purpose, Objectives, & Methods * Demographics * Nicotine * Alcohol
Drugs * DSM-IV-TR Criteria * Treatment Utilization and Treatment Need *Attitudes & Beliefs
1998 Report Comparison * Regional Comparison * Concluding Remarks