Currently, opioids such as fentanyl, heroin, and prescription opioids pose the largest drug threat to the state of Maine. Marijuana, cocaine, and methamphetamine also pose a significant risk for drug users within the state. These three drugs have been widely popular for many years, contributing to countless social problems and various crime issues within the state. Alcohol is also widely used throughout the state and contribute to youth alcohol problems such as binge drinking. Roughly over one-quarter of high school students in Maine reported consuming alcohol in the past month. However, in recent years the rate of reported binge drinking has been decreasing among high school students. For example, in 2011 just under one -third of high school students reported drinking before the age of 13.
Alcohol is the most frequently used substance among adults in the state, and more than half of adults have consumed alcohol in the past month. Three out of ten adults between 18 to 35 reported binge drinking in the past 30 days. Young adults in Maine have the highest rates of binge drinking, but over the years this gap has been closing. The use of prescription pain medication in the state has remained steady, roughly one in seven high school students reported misusing prescription drugs at least once in their lifetime. However, the non-medical use of prescription pain relievers is high among adults ages 18 to 25. Drug and alcohol abuse leads to a number of different problems. When you start to abuse drugs at an early age, it increases the risk of this problem to continue later in life.
Adolescent drug treatment programs are available in the state, and it is never too early to intervene and help someone who is addicted to drugs or alcohol. Prevention and education are also important to ensure people have the right information about drugs and alcohol and can make responsible choices.