One in four youths who used addictive substances, such as drugs and alcohol, before age 18 became addicted compared to only one in 25 who began use at age 21 and older, according to a study. The report suggests that substance use has reached an "epidemic" level among minors, with 75% of high school students having already tried such substances. "The combination of adolescence, an American culture that glorifies and promotes substance use, and easy access to tobacco, alcohol and other drugs creates a perfect storm for our teens and for taxpayers," said Jim Ramstad of the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse.

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