Highlights from the National Survey of American Attitudes on Substance Abuse XVI: Teens and Parents
In a typical day, 70 percent of 12- to 17-year olds spend anywhere from a minute or two to hours on such sites; only 30 percent of teens spend no time on such sites in a typical day. For 12- to 17-year olds, time spent on Facebook, Myspace and other social networking sites puts them at increased risk of smoking, drinking and drug use.
Compared to teens who in a typical day do not spend any time on a social networking site, those who do are:
•Five times likelier to use tobacco (10 percent vs. two percent).
•Three times likelier to use alcohol (26 percent vs. nine percent).
•Twice as likely to use marijuana (13 percent vs. seven percent).
What Kids See On Social Networking Sites:
•Half of the teens who spend any time on social networking sites in a typical day have seen pictures of kids drunk, passed out, or using drugs on these sites.
•Even 14 percent of those teens who spend no time on social networking sites in a typical day have seen pictures of kids drunk, passed out, or using drugs on these sites. Compared to teens who have not seen such pictures, teens who have seen pictures of kids drunk, passed out, or using drugs on Facebook or other social networking sites are:
•Three times likelier to use alcohol.
•Four times likelier to use marijuana.
•More than twice as likely to think they’ll try drugs in the future.
•Four times likelier to be able to get marijuana, almost three times likelier to be able to get controlled prescription drugs without a prescription and more than twice as likely to be able to get alcohol in a day or less.
•Much likelier to have friends and classmates who use illegal drugs and abuse controlled prescription drugs.
Almost half of the teens who have seen pictures of kids drunk, passed out, or using drugs on Facebook and other social networking sites first saw such pictures when they were 13 years of age or younger; more than 90 percent first saw such pictures when they were 15 or younger. Nine of 10 parents do not think teens spending time on social networking sites like Facebook are likelier to drink or use drugs. Only 64 percent of parents who say their teen has a social networking page also say they monitor it.
Suggestive Programming On Television:
A third of all teens — including 46 percent of girls and 19 percent of boys — watch suggestive teen programming. Compared to those who do not watch such programming, teens who do watch suggestive programming in a typical week are likelier to use tobacco, alcohol and marijuana.
Teens who have been cyber bullied — that is, have “had someone write or post mean or embarrassing things about [them] online, like on Facebook, Myspace or other social networking sites” — are at higher risk of substance abuse.
Almost one in five 12- to 17-year olds — more than four-and-a-half million kids — have been cyber bullied. The survey reveals that cyber bullied teens are more than twice as likely to smoke, drink and use marijuana.
•Teens whose parents don’t agree completely with each other on what to say to their teen about drug use are more than three times likelier to use marijuana and three-and-a-half times likelier to expect to try drugs in the future than teens whose parents are in complete agreement.
•Teens whose parents do not agree completely with each other on what to say to their teen about drinking are twice as likely to use alcohol as teens whose parents are in complete agreement.
Tobacco and Marijuana
For teens, tobacco use is closely tied to marijuana use. Teens who have smoked nicotine cigarettes are 11 times likelier to use marijuana than teens who have never smoked (68 percent vs. six percent.