Young people

The share of abstinent young people aged 12–16 is now greater than ever before in the 21st century.

The alcohol use of young people starts on average at the age of 12–13, when they move from primary school to secondary school. Among 12-year-olds, 97 percent of boys and 99 percent of girls still indicated that they do not drink alcohol even in small volumes.

However, abstinence decreases with age: only 12 percent of 18-year-olds reported, they do not drink at all.

The school health survey shows that the alcohol use of comprehensive school pupils and upper secondary school students is clearly at a lower level than among students in vocational schools. 


Kinnunen JM, Lindfors P, Pere L, Ollila H, Samposalo H, Rimpelä A.Young people's health habit survey. Young people's tobacco and drugs use 1977–2015. Ministry of Social Affairs and Health, 2015.
School health survey results 2015.

Did you know that

  • The mean consumption of alcohol should not exceed 10g of pure alcohol a
    day for women an 20g for men.
  • This "low-risk" level means roughly the amount of one (women) and two (men)
    bottles of medium beer.

Read more: National Institute for Health and welfare.