4.6 Lakh Children Addicted To Inhalant Drugs Need Immediate Help

Alcohol Consumption Rate
Image for representation only.

After alcohol, cannabis and opioids are the next commonly used substances in India, a key finding suggests.

The study, ‘Magnitude of Substance Use in India’, was conducted by the National Drug Dependence Treatment Centre (NDDTC), assisted by All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIMS), New Delhi.

The national survey, which was conducted in all the 36 states and UTS of the country, in collaboration with 10 other medical institutes and a network of 15 NGOs, found that nationally, about 14.6% of the population (between 10 and 75 year of age) uses alcohol. There are about 16 crore persons who consume alcohol in the country.

However, Maharashtra is amongst the top five states which house the largest population of people using sedatives with high number of children needing help for inhalant use.

Maharashtra also contributes in the estimated approximately 60 lakh people with opioid use disorders (harmful or dependent pattern) in the country along with Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, Delhi, Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh and Gujarat.

The report further highlighted that about 5.2% of the population (more than 5.7 crore individuals) are affected by harmful or dependent alcohol use and need help for their alcohol use problems.

A substantial proportion of Indians (more than 5%) suffer from alcohol use disorders and only a small minority of people affected by substance use disorders have access to treatment services.

Union Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment Thaawar Chand Gehlot in a press release said that the State governments and all other stakeholders including NGOs and drug de-addiction centres will be consulted to formulate guidelines and action plan to counter the menace of drug abuse.

“We do get a lot of children under the age of 18 who come to us to buy drinks and we kind of understand that they are trying to act mature. In such situations we deny serving them with alcoholic drinks but then they have their own ways and other places to have access to alcohol. But when it comes to scoring drugs there is no age limit to that. Pune does have hotspots that are even close to colleges that does provide with low and high level drugs to young Puneites,” shares a local alcohol vendor.

Other Key Findings

  • States with the highest prevalence of alcohol use are Chhattisgarh, Tripura, Punjab, Arunachal Pradesh and Goa.
  • At least 4.6 lakh children are addicted to inhalant drugs. Nearly one in five alcohol users suffers from alcohol dependence and needs urgent treatment.
  • In the general population, about 0.20% of Indians need help for their sedative use problems.
  • For every one woman who consumes alcohol, there are 17 alcohol using men.
    1:17 (alcohol consumption ratio)
  • About 2.8% of the population (3.1 crore individuals) reports having used any cannabis product within the previous year.
  • Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Punjab, Andhra Pradesh and Gujarat are the top five the top five states which house the largest populations of people using sedatives.
  • About 1.08% of 10-75 year old Indians (approx.. 1.18 crore people) are currently users of sedatives (non-medical, non-prescription use)
  • Inhalants are the only category of substances for which the prevalence of current use among children and adolescents is higher (1.17%) than adults (0.58%).



Loveleen Kaur

Loveleen Kaur

She loves travelling, dogs, sarcasm, humour and anything that spells F O O D, in that order. A writer on a journey to make positive stories a morning ritual and give society what it needs the most - optimism !!

Reach her at loveleen@pune365.com or tweet @KaurKaur18
Loveleen Kaur