College Students with Physical and Cognitive Disabilities Are At Higher Risk Greater Risk for Drug Misuse, Study Suggests

Jan, 2021 - By WMR

College Students with Physical and Cognitive Disabilities Are At Higher Risk Greater Risk for Drug Misuse, Study Suggests

According to a new research study by the researchers of Rutgers University have reported that college students with disabilities are more prone towards illicit drugs and are at higher risk for drug use disorder, in comparison to students without any disability. Moreover, according to American College Health Association around 41% of the college students uses an illicit drug, majorly marijuana. It also estimated that among illicit drug users 54% of the students undergo disability such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, learning disabilities, psychiatric disorders, and chronic illnesses including cancer, autoimmune disorders or diabetes.

In this study, researchers considered 6,189 college or university students of which 15% had some kind of disability that negatively impacted their mobility, hearing, mental or emotional functioning and vision. The illicit drugs used by these college students include cocaine, methamphetamine, marijuana, heroin, hallucinogens, inhalants, and prescription medications including stimulants, pain relievers, tranquilizers, and sedatives.

Researchers observed that students with disability misused prescription pain relievers. Moreover, 40% of students with any disability were reported of having drug misuse, in comparison to 30% of the college students without any disability.

Myriam Casseus, lead author, stated, “The odds of past-year misuse of prescription pain relievers, in general, was almost twice as high for students with any disability. In fact, students with any disability were two-and-a-half times more likely to have misused OxyContin specifically. This may be due, in part, to these students self-medicating for pain and stress management.”

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