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Methamphetamine, traditionally associated with white, male, blue-collar workers, is being used by more diverse population groups that change over time and differ by geographic area.
According to the 1996 National Household Survey on Drug Abuse, an estimated 4.9 million people (2.3 percent of the population) have tried methamphetamine at some time in their lives. In 1994, the estimate was 3.8 million (1.8 percent), and in 1995 it was 4.7 million (2.2 percent).
Data from the 1996 Drug Abuse Warning Network (DAWN), reported that methamphetamine-related episodes decreased by 39 percent between 1994 and 1996, after a 237 percent increase between 1990 and 1994.
NIDA's Community Epidemiology Work Group (CEWG), an early warning network of researchers that provides information about the nature and patterns of drug use in major cities, reported in its June 1997 publication that methamphetamine continues to be a problem in Hawaii and in major Western cities, such as San Francisco, Denver, and Los Angeles.