[Noozhawk’s note: This article is part of Noozhawk’s 12-day, six-week special investigative series, Prescription for Abuse. Related links are below.]

The new National Survey on Drug Use & Health found that 22.6 million Americans age 12 or older were current illicit drug users in 2010. That figure counts for 8.9 percent of the U.S. population, up from 8 percent in 2008.

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The survey, released Sept. 8 by the Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration, a division of the Health and Human Services Department, said an increased rate in the use of marijuana was one of the reasons behind the jump.

In 2010, 17.4 million teens and adults — 6.9 percent of the population — were current users of marijuana, compared to 14.4 million in 2007, the survey reported.

2010 National Survey on Drug Use and Health-SAMHSA

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Noozhawk publisher Bill Macfadyen can be reached at wmacfadyen@noozhawk.com. Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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William M. Macfadyen, Noozhawk Publisher

Bill Macfadyen is Noozhawk’s founder and publisher. Contact him at wmacfadyen@noozhawk.com, and follow him on Instagram: @bill.macfadyen. The opinions expressed are his own.