Data and Statistics

A variety of information sources are available to monitor the prevalence and trends of marijuana use in the United States. The resources below cover a variety of marijuana-related issues, including data around usage, emergency department data, substance use and misuse data, policy measures, and other related tools.

Fast Facts
  • Marijuana is the most commonly used federally illegal drug in the United States; 48.2 million people, or about 18% of Americans, used it at least once in 2019.1
  • Recent research estimated that approximately 3 in 10 people who use marijuana have marijuana use disorder.2 For people who begin using marijuana before age 18, the risk of developing marijuana use disorder is even greater.3
  • Marijuana use directly affects the brain, specifically the parts of the brain responsible for memory, learning, attention, decision-making, coordination, emotion, and reaction time. Infants, children, and teens (who still have developing brains) are especially susceptible to the adverse effects of marijuana.4,5
  • Long-term or frequent marijuana use has been linked to increased risk of psychosis or schizophrenia in some users.6,7
  • Using marijuana during pregnancy may increase the person’s risk for pregnancy complications. Pregnant and breastfeeding persons should avoid marijuana.8
National Surveys That Collect Information About Marijuana Use



National Programs That Collect Information About Marijuana Policies
Trends and Statistics
  • Nationwide Trendsexternal icon Describes nationwide trends in drug abuse and addiction, focusing on past-month use for illicit drugs (including marijuana and prescription drugs), alcohol, and tobacco.
  • Treatment Statisticsexternal icon Reports data on the number of people in need of drug abuse treatment and characteristics of admissions to substance abuse treatment facilities.
  1. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, “Key substance use and mental health indicators in the United States: Results from the 2019 National Survey on Drug Use and Health,” Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Rockville, MD, 2020.
  2. S. Hasin et al., “Prevalence of Marijuana Use Disorders in the United States Between 2001–2002 and 2012–2013,” JAMA Psychiatry, vol. 72, no. 12, pp. 1235–1242, 2015.
  3. Lopez-Quintero et al., “Probability and predictors of transition from first use to dependence on nicotine, alcohol, cannabis, and cocaine: results of the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions (NESARC),” Drug Alcohol Depend, vol. 115, no. 1–2, pp. 120–130, 2011.
  4. M. Filbey et al., “Long-term effects of marijuana use on the brain,” in Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, vol. 111, Center for BrainHealth, University of Texas, Dallas, TX 75235 The Mind Research Network, Albuquerque, NM 87106 and, 2014, pp. 16913–16918.
  5. H. Meier et al., “Persistent cannabis users show neuropsychological decline from childhood to midlife,” Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, vol. 109, no. 40, pp. E2657-64, 2012.
  6. Di Forti et al., “Proportion of patients in south London with first-episode psychosis attributable to use of high potency cannabis: a case-control study,” Lancet Psychiatry, vol. 2, no. 3, pp. 233–238, 2015.
  7. Di Forti et al., “High-potency cannabis and the risk of psychosis,” Br J Psychiatry, vol. 195, no. 6, pp. 488–491, 2009.M. Di Forti et al., “Daily use, especially of high-potency cannabis, drives the earlier onset of psychosis in cannabis users,” Schizophr Bull, vol. 40, no. 6, pp. 1509–1517, 2014
  8. National Academies of Sciences Engineering and Medicine, “The health effects of cannabis and cannabinoids: Current state of evidence and recommendations for research,” Washington, DC, 2017.