1997 National Household Survey on Drug Abuse
Hallucinogen Use12 (Tables 5.4 to 5.6)
Overall and in each of the four age categories shown in Table 5.4, lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) was the hallucinogen most frequently reported, followed by psilocybin (mushrooms). A total of 16.8 million (8%) had ever tried LSD, and 10.2 million (5%) had ever tried psilocybin in 1997 (OAS, 1998d, Table 78B). Overall, lifetime prevalence rates for other specific hallucinogenic drugs were 3.0% for phencyclidine (PCP), 2.6% for mescaline, 1.5% for ecstasy, and 1.4% for peyote.
Hallucinogen Use, by Age Group, Gender, and Race/Ethnicity. Lifetime hallucinogen use was equally high among the 18 to 25 and 26 to 34 age groups (15%, respectively), and these rates were significantly higher than those reported by the younger and older age groups (7%, respectively). Past year use of hallucinogens was highest among 18 to 25 year olds (7%), followed by 12 to 17 year olds (5%), 26 to 34 year olds (2%), and those 35 or older (0.5%).
Hallucinogen use also varied by gender. Males were about twice as likely as females to report lifetime and past year hallucinogen use, both in the overall sample and among each of the adult age groups. No statistically significant gender differences were found in the 12 to 17 age group.
Race/ethnicity was associated with the prevalence of hallucinogen use. Overall, whites reported higher levels of lifetime hallucinogen use than Hispanics, who reported higher rates than blacks. These same relationships were found within every age group, except that there was no statistically significant differences in the rates reported by Hispanics and blacks in the two older age groups. The largest differences in reported use occurred among 18 to 25 year olds; whites were more than 10 times as likely as blacks to report lifetime hallucinogen use. Overall and among 18 to 25 year olds, past year use was higher among whites and Hispanics than among blacks.
Hallucinogen Use, by Other Demographic Characteristics. There were some differences by population density and region with hallucinogen use. Overall, past year hallucinogen use was higher among respondents in small metropolitan areas than among those in large metropolitan and nonmetropolitan areas and among residents of the West than among those in all other regions.
Adult education and employment were generally associated with hallucinogen use. Among 18 to 25 year olds, college graduates were least likely to have used hallucinogens in the past year. When examining the general surveyed population aged 18 or older by employment status, the population in the "other" employment category was the least likely to have used hallucinogens in their lifetime and in the past year.
12 Additional information on the use of LSD and PCP is provided in separate sections, following this general discussion on hallucinogens.
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