15 Maps That Show American Drug Use

Courtesy of: Business Insider

Illicit drugs are most popular on the West Coast, Colorado, and the Northeast according to 2010-2011 surveys from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

Other regions of the country have their own vices, too, as the South has the most smokers and the Midwest has the most binge drinkers. We’ve mapped the data to identify these and other trends in U.S. drug use.

Below is a map of illicit drug use by state, with the highest rates found in the West, Northeast, and Colorado. Vermont is the druggiest state, with 15.29% saying they have used illicit drugs in the past month compared to only 4.29% in Utah.

01_Illicit Drug Use Past Month

Marijuana use follows a similar pattern. Vermont takes the lead again with 13.12% using in the past month.

02_Pot Use Past Month

Marijuana is even more popular among Vermont teenagers, 14.04% of whom have smoked in the past month.

03_Pot Use Past Month Youths

Many of the states that smoke the most marijuana have the lowest perception of risk. Nearly half (41.82%) of people in Mississippi think smoking weed is a huge risk.

04_Perception Great Risk Pot Once a Month

Washington D.C. takes the lead for coke use, with 3.04 percent of residents using in the past year. Other users tend to come from the West, Northeast, and Colorado.

06_Cocaine Use Past YearIllegal pain pill use is even more widespread than cocaine. Oregon takes the lead here, with 6.37% of residents making nonmedical use of pain relievers in the past year. Iowa had the lowest rate at 3.62%.

07_Nonmedical Use Pain Relievers Past YearUtah is a stark outlier when it comes to alcohol use, holding up the Mormon stereotype. The state also has some of the strictest alcohol laws in the country. The state with the highest rate of drinkers is Massachusetts, where 63% of residents over the age of 12 consumed alcohol in the past month.

08_Alcohol Use Past MonthNorth Dakota and South Dakota rank low compared to other states for drug use, but binge drinking is especially common there.

09_Binge Alcohol Use Past MonthThe part of the country that binge drinks the most also has the lowest perception of risk associated with drinking. 

10_Perception of Great Risk 5 or More DrinksTobacco use is most common in southern states. West Virginia has the highest tobacco use, with 38.46% of residents using in the past month.

11_Tobacco Use Past Month

The same goes for cigarettes.

12_Cigarette Use Past Month

Awareness of the risks associated with smoking is pretty high overall, especially in California, New York, and Florida.

13_Perception Great Risk Smoking Packs
Alcohol abuse and addiction is most common in the western half of the country, with the exception of Utah.
14_Alcohol Dependence or Abuse Past Year

Illicit drug abuse and addiction is also most common in the West, with Vermont also ranking high.

15_Illicit Drug Dependence or Abuse Past Year
Illicit drug addiction among teenagers is fairly low overall. Every state falls between 2% and 3.6%, with New Mexico, Arizona, and New England ranking higher than other states.
16_Illicit Drug Dependence Past Year Youths
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