Prevalence Data

 How many people use drugs and alcohol in Ireland?

Drug prevalence is the proportion of a population who have used drugs in a given time period.

Every four years the National Advisory Committee on Drugs and Alcohol, and the Northern Ireland Public Health Information and Research Branch, commission a survey of the general population to estimate the number of people in Ireland who use drugs and alcohol. The 2014/15 survey involved 9,505 people (7,005 in Ireland and 2,500 in Northern Ireland).

Bulletin one: overall results

Bulletin two: regional results 


Bulletin three: cannabis results (summary)


Bulletin four: polydrug and new psychoactive substances 


Bulletin five: prescription drug use

The main purpose of the European School Survey Project on Alcohol and Other Drugs (ESPAD) is to collect comparable data on substance use among European students aged 15 and 16 in order to monitor trends within, as well as between, countries. The 2015 wave of the ESPAD survey marked the sixth occasion that Ireland has participated in this collaborative international project.

2016 ESPAD survey European results

2016 ESPAD survey Irish results and ESPAD summary article from Drugnet Ireland 60

2016 ESPAD summary article of Irish results
The Irish Health Behaviour in School-aged Children (HBSC) study 2014 is the fifth time that data of this kind have been collected from young people (school going children aged 9-18 years) across the Republic of Ireland. Substance use questions cover tobacco, alcohol and cannabis use.

Trends in health behaviours, health outcomes and contextual factors between 1998-2014: findings from the Irish health behaviour in school-aged children study

Irish Health Behaviour in School-aged Children (HBSC) study 2014


HBSC Ireland 2014: alcohol and cannabis use in school-children in Ireland (updated).