From 2016 to 2020, mental health and substance use data has increased significantly nationwide in most categories. The comparison can be seen below and uses data from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) website from 2016 and 2020:
|Categories||2016 Data||2020 Data|
|Americans 12 or older using illicit drugs in the past year||28.6 million||59.3 million|
|Americans 12 or older reporting being current alcohol drinkers||136.7 million||138.5 million|
|Americans who have misused pain relievers in the past year||11.5 million||9.3 million|
|Americans 12 or older who classified as having an alcohol use disorder||15.1 million||28.3 million|
|Americans 12 or older who have been diagnosed with a mental illness||44.7 million||52.9 million|
|Americans 12 or older who stated they are current marijuana users||24.0 million||49.6 million|
Also, there is now an e-cigarette epidemic among our youth which is concerning as vaping nicotine products has been identified as a risk factor for future cigarette use. Our community is affected by this epidemic. SAMHSA data did not include questions on nicotine vaping until 2020, as nicotine vaping has increased greatly. In the 2019, the National Youth Tobacco Survey and the Monitoring the Future study, it was indicated that vaping had become prevalent in our youth as the most common nicotine product. Nearly 2/3 of adolescents aged 12-17 used nicotine products in the past month and 63.1% vaped nicotine products.
If you or someone you know needs resources for mental health, AODA, food pantries, etc. please call the Forest County Health Department. These resources are also posted on our website www.forestcountypublichealth.org under “Resources & Crisis Hotlines.” Be on the lookout for the 2022 Prevention Week proclamation in the upcoming weeks and participate in the events hosted throughout the week!