Data from the 2011 National Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS) was released yesterday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The survey is conducted every 2 years and is designed to monitor the changes in behaviors among high school students. The teenagers are asked questions to gauge risky behaviors such as tobacco use, alcohol use, sexual behaviors, and health risk behaviors such as seat belt use. This information is then used to assess the risks facing teens at a local, state, and national level.
The 2011 survey showed that cigarette usage dropped only 1% from 2009 to 2011, but current marijuana usage increased 2% from 2009 to 2011. 18% of teens surveyed admitted to using cigarettes, while 23% of teenagers admitted to using marijuana.
Since the survey began in 1999, marijuana use among teens has dropped from 27% to 23%.