Following on from our recent report on the national drug use picture, the data has now been broken down by region and shows Valencia as being in second place for cannabis use in the last month, second only to Catalonia
The Valencia Region is in second position, behind Catalonia, in terms of cannabis use during the last month reaching 11%, according to the latest data published by EDADES, a Survey on Alcohol and Drugs in Spain.
The regionalised data has made it clear that it is a specifically older group of users who are consuming cannabis, more prevalent in middle-aged men, compared to alcohol where young people begin their consumption journey at 16.1 years of age.
In this way, this study shows that, during the last 30 days, one in ten regional residents consumed cannabis, at least once, and that the average age of onset of this drug is 18.5 years, above the Spanish average (18.4%).
Overall, 39.4% of Valencians have used this substance at some time in their life, while 12.7% have used it during the last year. For their part, men are the biggest consumers of cannabis with an average of 2.7 per day. Nationwide, cocaine is another of the most consumed drugs among men with an average of 36.6%, believed to be brought on through family problems or with friends.
Regarding heroin, it is accentuated among 44-year-old males. However, these figures decrease among women, since there is a greater perception of risk within this sex.
Regarding the consumption of alcohol, the age is increasingly reducing across Valencia, now standing at 16.1 years-of-age, compared to 16.6 of the national average. This study, which aims to obtain information in order to design and evaluate policies to prevent the misuse of drugs, states that it is the substance that is perceived as less dangerous among Spaniards. Along with the Balearic Islands and Asturias, Valencians have had a higher level of prevalence in their consumption during the last month. However, at the national level the figures decrease reaching values similar to those of 1995, although, in turn, daily consumption rises to 34%.
Tobacco is also present in Spaniards at an increasingly early age, being one of the most consumed drugs along with alcohol and hypnosedatives. In this way, young people begin their consumption at 16.4 years, although this figure increases to 19.2 years compared to daily consumption. For its part, the Valencia Region also leads the ranking in terms of consumption of this substance, along with Asturias, Cantabria and Aragon, during the last 12 months also exceeding the Spanish average both in the last month and daily. Many young people defend, according to this study, that its use is because it encourages parties or because they simply like this substance.
The respondents highlight the importance of carrying out preventive measures against the consumption of this type of substances such as education in schools, advertising campaigns or police and customs control.