Common Drugs Used in the United States

A List of the Most Common Drugs Consumed in the U.S.

Alcohol and drugs are commonly used or misused in the United States. According to the 2019 National Survey of Drug Use and Health, drug use increased between 2018 and 2019. The survey showed that in 2018, 134,791 people responded that they had used illicit drugs in their lifetime. By 2019 that number had increased to 138,027.

Some of the most commonly used drugs in the United States include:

  • Alcohol
  • Marijuana
  • Cocaine
  • Crack 
  • Heroin
  • LSD
  • Ecstasy
  • Prescription Drugs
  • Over-the-Counter stimulants, depressants, and psychotherapeutics

Illicit Drug Use in the Past Year

Increases were not only to the lifetime use of drugs but also drug use within the past year. According to the NSUDH, 53,182 people responded that they had used illicit drugs within the past year in 2018. By 2019, the number had increased to 57,203. 

Marijuana Use 

The NSUDH looked at the use of specific drugs such as marijuana. As indicated by their findings in 2018, 123,935 respondents said that they had used marijuana within their lifetime. In 2019, the number increased to 127,139. In 2018, the number of people indicating that they had used marijuana within the past year was 43,486. By 2019, that number had risen to 48,242.

Cocaine Use

Cocaine was another commonly used drug according to the NSUDH with 40,194 of respondents stating that they had used it within their lifetime in 2018 and 41,445 stating they had done so within their lifetime by 2019. The number of people who had used cocaine within the past year decreased slightly from 5,529 in 2018 to 5,468 in 2019.