Methamphetamine and Young People

This section contains information about the methamphetamine use patterns of Australians who are under 18 years of age.

Given the extremely small proportion of Australian youth who use methamphetamine, there is little reliable and meaningful data about this population group available. As a result, this section presents only three FAQs, drawn from the 2017 Australian Secondary School Students’ Alcohol and Drug (ASSAD) Survey (Cancer Council Victoria, 2018).

To be consistent with the terminology used in the ASSAD survey, this section of the NADK uses the term amphetamines. ASSAD defines amphetamines as including amphetamines or speed, uppers, goey, crystal meth, dex, Dexie’s, dexamphetamine, ox blood, methamphetamine or ice, other than for medical reasons.

What proportion of Australian school students aged 12-17 years have used amphetamines?

The majority of Australian school students aged 12-17 years have never used methamphetamine (98%). Small proportions reported using methamphetamine in the past year (2%) and past month (1%).

Source: Cancer Council Victoria (2018). ASSAD 2017 Statistics & Trends: Australian secondary school students' use of tobacco, alcohol, over-the-counter drugs, and illicit substances.

† The Australian Secondary Students’ Alcohol and Drug (ASSAD) survey defines methamphetamine as speed, meth, or ice.

Are male or female school students aged 12-17 years more likely to have used amphetamines?

Among Australian school students aged 12-17 years, boys were slightly more likely than girls to have used methamphetamines in their lifetime and the past year. Boys and girls were equally as likely to have used in the past month.

Source: Cancer Council Victoria (2018). ASSAD 2017 Statistics & Trends: Australian secondary school students' use of tobacco, alcohol, over-the-counter drugs, and illicit substances.

† The Australian Secondary Students’ Alcohol and Drug (ASSAD) survey defines methamphetamine as speed, meth, or ice.

Are younger or older school students aged 12-17 years more likely to have used amphetamines?

Among Australian school students aged 12-17 years, methamphetamine use generally increased with age. Older students were more likely to have used methamphetamine in their lifetime and in the past year compared to younger students. Older and younger students were equally likely to have used methamphetamine in the past month.

Source: Cancer Council Victoria (2018). ASSAD 2017 Statistics & Trends: Australian secondary school students' use of tobacco, alcohol, over-the-counter drugs, and illicit substances.

† The Australian Secondary Students’ Alcohol and Drug (ASSAD) survey defines methamphetamine as speed, meth, or ice.