Drug use in Lithuania 2017

Lithuania Country Drug Report 2017

Drug use

Prevalence and trends

Data from the 2012 general population survey indicate that slightly more than 1 in 10 Lithuanian adults have ever used an illicit substance. Cannabis is the most commonly used illicit drug in Lithuania, and its use is concentrated among young adults aged 15-34 years. Nevertheless, last-year and last-month cannabis use among this age group declined between 2008 and 2012. In general, males were four times more likely to report lifetime use of cannabis; however, the gender gap narrowed in younger age groups. In 2012, amphetamines were the most common illicit stimulants used by young adults

Among certain sub-groups of young people in Lithuania, the prevalence of psychoactive substance use tends to be higher. One of these sub-groups is those attending recreational settings, such as nightclubs. A 2013 study set in nightclub settings in five main cities found that more than one third of clubbers had used an illicit substance in the past, with cannabis being the most popular drug, followed by cocaine, MDMA/ecstasy and amphetamines.


Estimates of last-year drug use among young adults (15-34 years) in Lithuania


NBEstimated last-year prevalence of drug use in 2012.


Substance use among 15- to 16- year-old school students in Lithuania

NBSource: ESPAD study 2015.

Drug use among 15- to 16-year-old students is reported in the European School Survey Project on Alcohol and Other Drugs (ESPAD), which has been conducted in Lithuania since 1995, and the latest data are from 2015. Lifetime use of cannabis and other illicit substances in Lithuania was relatively close to the ESPAD average (35 countries) in 2015. Long-term analysis indicates that cannabis use among 15- to 16-year-old students in Lithuania has remained stable during the last decade, based on the prevalence of lifetime, last-year and last-month drug use. Data on the use of NPS are also available from the 2015 ESPAD study and indicate that 5 % of students aged 15-16 years have tried these substances at least once. Among other key variables, the proportion of students in Lithuania reporting alcohol use in the last 30 days was considerably lower than the European average, whereas cigarette use in the last 30 days and lifetime use of tranquillisers or sedatives without prescription were slightly more common

High-risk drug use and trends

Studies reporting estimates of high-risk drug use can help to identify the extent of the more entrenched drug use problems, while data on the first-time entrants to specialised drug treatment centres, when considered alongside other indicators, can inform understanding on the nature and trends in high-risk drug use

The latest estimates of high-risk opioid use date back to 2007. At that time, it was estimated that there were around 5 458 high-risk opioid users, that is 2.4 per 1 000 of the population aged 15-64 years. In addition, available estimates and data from specialised drug treatment centres indicate that high-risk drug use in Lithuania is mainly linked to the use of opioids


High-risk drug use in Lithuania is linked mainly to the use of opioids


Data from specialised treatment centres indicate that opioids, mainly heroin, remained the most commonly reported primary substance for all and first-time clients entering treatment in 2015.

Injection remains the main route of drug administration among heroin and amphetamines users. Approximately one fifth of clients entering treatment are female; however, the proportion varies by type of programme and primary drug used

National estimates of last year prevalence of high-risk opioid use

NBYear of data 2015, or latest available year since 2009.


Characteristics and trends of drug users entering specialised drug treatment in Lithuania


NBYear of data 2015. Data is for first-time entrants, except for gender which is for all treatment entrants.

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