Types of Polydrug Usage

Olga Hernández-Serrano, Maria Eugènia Gras, Sílvia Font-Mayolas, Mark J.M. Sullman

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


The purpose of this chapter is to describe the different types of polydrug use among adolescents and adults. The examination of the natural heterogeneity in the typologies of polydrug users may be a helpful strategy to understand the etiology and problematic use. Alcohol is present among almost all types of polydrug users. Alcohol and tobacco, followed by illegal drugs (marijuana in particular), are a combination frequently used by adolescents and young adults. The majority of studies focus either on specific populations or on specific substances, or even only on indicators of polydrug use. Few studies have provided apparent evidence concerning similar types of polysubstance use. Future studies should be based on participants from the general population, clarify the concept of polydrug use, examine wider ranges of drugs, and measure polysubstance use over time. Early preventive interventions are needed, which provide a polysubstance perspective required to avoid the initiation and maintenance of polydrug use.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGeneral Processes and Mechanisms, Prescription Medications, Caffeine and Areca, Polydrug Misuse, Emerging Addictions and Non-Drug Addictions
PublisherElsevier Inc.
Number of pages11
ISBN (Electronic)9780128006771
ISBN (Print)9780128006344
Publication statusPublished - 13 May 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Adolescents
  • Adults
  • Polydrug use types
  • Review
  • Substance use


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