Steroid Abuse Statistics by School-Age Children and Teenagers
Topic: Steroid Abuse Statistics by School-Age Children and Teenagers
We already know that anabolic steroids are primarily abused by bodybuilders, professional athletes, and fitness buffs. But what’s even more alarming is that students are getting access and taking anabolic steroids without sufficient knowledge on the side effects of steroids abuse. Although steroids are usually acquired by means of doctor’s prescriptions for therapeutic purposes, school-age children and teenagers are obtaining the drug from illegal sources. Surprisingly enough, some schools that implement steroid testing on high school athletes are still running through the problem of steroids abuse by students.
The most common illegal source is from smuggling steroids into the United States from other countries, such as Mexico and European countries. In some cases, anabolic steroids for illegal use are produced in clandestine laboratories and are sold over the Internet.
Some examples of commonly abused steroids include the following:
|Oral Steroids||Injectable Steroids|
Unlike other drugs which are taken for their psychoactive effect, steroids are usually taken for muscle and strength development. Surveys conducted by the “Monitoring the Future” revealed that since 1991 there has been a significant increase in reported steroid use by school-age children and teenagers. The chart below illustrates the increase of steroid abuse among 8th, 10th, and 12th Graders who reported using steroids at least once in their lifetime.
|Year||8th Grade||10th Grade||12th Grade|
The 2002 survey also indicated additional data related to steroid abuse by school-age children:
|Student Steroid Use||8th Grade||10th Grade||12th Grade|
|Past Month Use||0.8%||1.0%||1.4%|
|Past Year Use||1.5%||2.2%||2.5%|
The table below demonstrates the prevalence of steroids use among 8th, 10th, and 12th Graders between 2003 and 2006.
|Student Steroid Use||8th Grade|
|Past month use||0.7%||0.5%||0.5%||0.5%|
|Past Year Use||1.4%||1.1%||1.1%||0.9%|
|Student Steroid Use||10th Grade|
|Past month use||0.8%||0.8%||0.6%||0.6%|
|Past Year Use||1.7%||1.5%||1.3%||1.2%|
|Student Steroid Use||12th Grade|
|Past month use||1.3%||1.6%||0.9%||1.1%|
|Past Year Use||2.1%||2.5%||1.5%||1.8%|
Anabolic steroids are used predominately by males. In 2010, the annual prevalence rates of anabolic steroids use were 0.7% (8th Grade), 1.3% (10th Grade), and 2.5% (12th Grade) for boys alone. Almost all of that increase occurred among boys increasing from 1.6% in 1998 to 2.5% in 1999 in 8th grade and from 1.9% to 2.8% in 10th grade. Thus, rates among boys increased by about 50% in a single year.
Meanwhile, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) conducted the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance Study – a survey of high school students across the United States – in 2001, which revealed that 5% of all high school students reported lifetime use of steroid tablets/injections without a doctor’s prescription. The survey also indicated that 5.8% of ninth graders, 4.9% of tenth graders, 4.3% of eleventh graders, and 4.3% of twelfth graders reported lifetime illegal use of steroids.
Students and teenagers may have difference reasons for taking and abusing steroids. And although the MTF (Monitoring the Future) surveys have shown a decline in steroids use by school-age children and teenagers over the last several years, the fight against steroids abuse is still a bit far from being over. The U.S. Department of Justice, particularly the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) continues to remind everyone that the most important aspect to curtailing abuse is education concerning dangerous and harmful side effects, and symptoms of abuse. Athletes and others must understand that they can excel in sports and have a great body without steroids. They should focus on getting proper diet, rest, and good overall mental and physical health. The use of steroid urine test kit by parents to monitor their children’s possible drug use is also helpful to minimize or deter the chances of steroids abuse. These things are all factors in how the body is shaped and conditioned.