Substance use and substance use disorder: Overview

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​Substance use is the use of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs for pleasure or enjoyment. Find out which substances teens use most often, and why, and what to do if you are concerned about substance use.

​Key points

  • Alcohol and cannabis are the substances most frequently tried by adolescents.
  • Teens with other mental health illness, including depression and anxiety, are at increased risk of having a substance use disorder.
  • As a parent, you are key in noticing changes in your teen's behaviour and in bringing your concerns to your teen in a non-judgmental way.
Last updated: January 30th 2019