How many teens use prescription drugs?

While past-year misuse of any prescription drug among 12th graders has steadily and slowly dropped since 2015, prescription and over-the-counter drugs are the most commonly misused substances by Americans age 14 and older, after marijuana, alcohol, and tobacco cigarettes.

The chart below shows the percentage of teens who misuse prescription drugs.

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Monitoring the Future Study: Trends in Prevalence of Any Prescription Drug for 12th Graders; 2016 - 2019 (in percent)*
Drug Time Period 12th Graders
2016 2017 2018 2019
Any Prescription Drug Lifetime 18.00 16.50 15.50 14.60
Past Year 12.00 10.90 [9.90] [8.60]
Past Month 5.40 4.90 4.20 [3.60]

* Data in brackets indicate statistically significant change from the previous year.