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Article

Illicit Drug Use in Canada and Implications for Suicidal Behaviors, and Household Food Insecurity: Findings from a Large, Nationally Representative Survey

1
Centre for Disease Modelling, Department of Mathematics and Statistics, York University, Toronto, ON M3J 1P3, Canada
2
Department of Emergency Medicine, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, ON K1Y 4E9, Canada
3
Department of Emergency Medicine, Pembroke Regional Hospital, Pembroke, ON K8A 1G8, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Paul B. Tchounwou
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(12), 6425; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18126425
Received: 22 May 2021 / Revised: 10 June 2021 / Accepted: 12 June 2021 / Published: 14 June 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Big Data and Mathematical Modeling in Biomedicine)
Background and Aims: Illicit drug use is an ongoing health and social issue in Canada. This study aimed to investigate the prevalence of illicit drug use and its implications for suicidal behaviors, and household food insecurity in Canada. Design: Cross-sectional population survey. Setting: Canada, using the 2015–2016 Canadian Community Health Survey, a nationally representative sample selected by stratified multi-stage probability sampling. Participants: A total of 106,850 respondents aged ≥ 12 years who had completed information on illicit drug use. Measurements: Illicit drug use was assessed through a series of questions about illicit drug use methods. Respondents who reported lifetime illicit drug use but no past-year use were considered to have prior illicit drug use. In this survey, illicit drug use included cannabis use. Findings: Overall, the prevalence of lifetime, past-year, and prior illicit drug use was 33.2% (9.8 million), 10.4% (3.1 million), and 22.7% (6.7 million), respectively. In models adjusting for sociodemographic covariates, prior illicit drug use was significantly associated with increased odds of past-year suicidal ideation (adjusted odds ratio [AOR] 1.21, 95% CI 1.04–1.40), and plans (1.48, 1.15–1.91), and past-year household food insecurity (1.27, 1.14–1.41), and the odds were much higher among prior injecting drug users than prior non-injecting drug users. No significant correlation was found between prior illicit drug use and past-year suicidal attempts, but there was a strong association between past-year illicit drug use and past-year suicidal attempts. Conclusions: Our findings suggest that even after people have stopped taking illicit drugs, prior illicit drug use, especially for prior injecting drug use, continues to be associated with increased risks of subsequent suicidal ideation, and plans, and household food insecurity. View Full-Text
Keywords: illicit drug use; suicidal behavior; household food insecurity; Canada illicit drug use; suicidal behavior; household food insecurity; Canada
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MDPI and ACS Style

Bragazzi, N.L.; Beamish, D.; Kong, J.D.; Wu, J. Illicit Drug Use in Canada and Implications for Suicidal Behaviors, and Household Food Insecurity: Findings from a Large, Nationally Representative Survey. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18, 6425. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18126425

AMA Style

Bragazzi NL, Beamish D, Kong JD, Wu J. Illicit Drug Use in Canada and Implications for Suicidal Behaviors, and Household Food Insecurity: Findings from a Large, Nationally Representative Survey. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2021; 18(12):6425. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18126425

Chicago/Turabian Style

Bragazzi, Nicola L., Dan Beamish, Jude D. Kong, and Jianhong Wu. 2021. "Illicit Drug Use in Canada and Implications for Suicidal Behaviors, and Household Food Insecurity: Findings from a Large, Nationally Representative Survey" International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 18, no. 12: 6425. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18126425

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