The acting minister highlighted the importance of the results of the STUDIES survey "to guide policies and enhance the effectiveness of actions against addictions", accompanied by the Government delegate of the National Drug Plan, Azucena Martí.

The STUDIES survey, which is carried out for young people between 14 and 18 years of age throughout Spain, shows an increase in the use of electronic cigarettes. Half of the students (48.4%) have ever used it. In the previous survey, of 2016, this was stated by one in five (20.1%).

The proportion of electronic cigarette users is considerably higher among those who smoke tobacco than among those who do not.

The study also reveals that consumption is more frequent among boys, regardless of age. Among students who have ever used electronic cigarettes, 67.1% used cartridges without nicotine, 11.3% with nicotine and 21.6% used cartridges of both types.


On the other hand, compulsive internet use has stabilized at 20%. Specifically, it has registered 1% less than in the previous edition of STUDIES. In this case, a higher prevalence is observed among girls (23.4%) than among boys (16.4%).

Video game

For the first time, the STUDIES survey reflects the consumption of video games. 82.2% of respondents say they have played video games in the last year. Specifically, 47.9% have played eSports and 34.7% have been spectators. The majority are boys of 14 and 15 years.

Most consumed drugs

STUDIES 2018-2019 shows that the drugs consumed by a higher percentage of students (in the last twelve months) are, firstly, alcohol (75.9%) and secondly tobacco (35%). Cannabis is followed (27.5%). Over-the-counter hypnotics reach 6.1%.

The rest of the drugs have a lower prevalence. 2.4% of respondents confess that they have used cocaine in the last 12 months. In this same temporary indicator, ecstasy has been consumed by 1.9%; the new psychoactive substances, 1.7%; hallucinogens, 1.4%; methamphetamines, 1.2% and amphetamines, 1.1%. The rest of the substances studied (more than 20) are at most 1%.

Higher male consumption

ArchiveThe consumption of all illegal drugs is more widespread among boys than among girls. With the lawful trade drugs (alcohol, tobacco or hypnotic) the opposite is true: except for opioid analgesics, girls consume them more.

Regarding risk perception, alcohol is the substance that is perceived as less dangerous. 76.8% attribute "many or many problems" to the consumption of 5 or 6 rods or cups on the weekend. For its part, since 2010, the consideration of tobacco persists as more dangerous than cannabis.

In fact, the perception of risk of cannabis use has decreased slightly. 87.5% of students aged 14 to 18 consider that consuming it regularly can cause many or many problems (90.7% in 2016). Regarding sporadic consumption, 51.9% of respondents perceive that risk, compared to 54.1% in 2016.

In terms of perceived availability, 9 out of 10 students aged 14 to 17 do not appreciate any difficulty in getting alcohol and tobacco if they wanted, even though the sale is prohibited in minors. The illegal drug that is perceived as the most available is cannabis: 68.1% believe that it is easy or very easy to acquire.

Most significant data by substances


Alcohol consumption remains at high levels. 77.9% of students between 14 and 18 have tried it once (76.9% in 2016). 75.9% have drunk in the last year (75.6% in 2016) and 58.5% have drank in the last month (67.0% in 2016).

The average age of onset in consumption continues at 14 years. In 1994, he was 13 and a half years old.

Regarding consumption patterns, 32.3% of students say they have consumed binge drinking alcohol in the last 30 days (31.7% in 2016). Of the total number of students who drank alcohol in this temporary reference, half (55.5%) admit having done binge drinking.

Drunkenness has increased slightly. 24.3% of students say they got drunk in the last month, compared to 21.8% in 2016. The percentage of drunkenness is higher in girls. This difference is especially relevant at age 14: 11.7% of girls admit to having got drunk in the last 30 days, while the figure among boys of their same age is 7.6%.

Half of the young people (51.3%) claim to have made a bottle in the last year. This practice increases with age: this is recognized by 28.4% of respondents aged 14 and 64.1% of those aged 18.


CigaretteArchiveTobacco is the second most widespread drug after alcohol. 35.0% (34.7% in 2016) of students have smoked tobacco in the last year. Daily consumption stands at 9.8% (8.8% in 2016). In 1998, 23.1% of this sector of the population smoked daily.

On average, the first consumption of tobacco occurs at 14.1 years, as was the case in 2016. The acquisition of daily smoking begins at 14.7 years on average, just half a year after trying it for first time.

The perception of risk in the face of daily tobacco use has increased and 93.8% of young people think that it can cause many or many health problems.


Cannabis continues to be the illegal drug consumed by a higher percentage of students. 33.0% (31.1% in 2016) have tried it sometime in their lives, 27.5% (26.3% in 2016) in the last year and 19.3% (18.3% in 2016) in the last month. Daily consumption remains high and stands at 2.3% (3.3% in boys and 1.4% in girls).

The percentage of problematic cannabis users (it began to be measured in 2006) among the population aged 14 to 18 is 15.4% (13.3% in 2016).


The survey shows a decrease in cocaine consumption in all temporary indicators. A historical minimum is reached in the proportion of students aged 14 to 18 who say they have used cocaine in the last month (0.9%).

This figure was 3.8% in 2004. The average age of first consumption is 15.2 years and men consume more than women, in all age groups.


The percentage of those who have tested heroin among students aged 14 to 18 years is below 1%. Since 1994 no measurement has exceeded this figure. The average age of onset of consumption in 2018-2019 is 14.5 years.

New psychoactive substances (NSPs)

A decrease is recorded. 2.4% of students (2.9% of boys and 1.9% of girls) acknowledge having used substances of this type at some time in their life and 1.7% in the last 12 months. In 2016, the percentages were 4.5% and 3.1%, respectively.

Survey fact sheet

The XIII edition of the Survey on the Use of Drugs in Secondary Education in Spain (ESTUDES) has been prepared based on 38,010 questionnaires answered by students aged 14 to 18 in 1,769 classrooms corresponding to 917 public and private educational centers. The sample is collected throughout Spain and is nationally representative, with a margin of error of 0.6% for a confidence level of 95.5%. The fieldwork was carried out between February 4, 2019 and April 5, 2019.

This survey is promoted and funded by the Government Delegation for the National Drug Plan and has the collaboration of the Autonomous Communities and Cities. STUDIES is carried out every two years since 1994.

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