Study says smarter people more likely to drink and do drugs. Sure, that's totally why we drink...

Study says smarter people more likely to drink and do drugs. Sure, that's totally why we drink...

VicesSeptember 16, 2013

Good news! You're wasted because you're a mini-Einstein. According to a new study published in Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, smarter people tend to experiment with drugs and alcohol at an earlier age. Yep. That's totally why we drink. Yep.

The study is part of a larger body of work that is making some interesting discoveries: people who develop language and intellectual skills at an earlier age like to party way harder than their less intelligent friends. Focusing on pairs of twins in Finland, researchers found that the twin who spoke their first words earlier, or who developed language skills first, was nearly twice as likely as their slower co-twin to be drinking before the age of 18. Twins who spoke first also drank more often per month than their doofus counterparts.

A similar study found that women who were in the top third of the IQ range in childhood were more than twice as likely as those scoring in the bottom third to have used marijuana or cocaine by age 30. And, for men, the smartest boys were almost 50% more likely to have taken an amphetamine and 65% more likely to have used ecstasy (MDMA) by adulthood.

But, intelligence isn't linked with abuse or addiction, just experimentation. That's because people of higher intelligence, and therefore (usually) education, are more likely to be aware of the signs and risks of addiction and abuse. Higher intelligence is also associated with higher income, which affords kids the ability to moderate problems of the drug or alcohol persuasion.

Intelligence spurs curiosity and risk-taking behavior, too. So the reason why we drank that entire handle of Jack Daniels is because we're geniuses, right? Let's just go with "yes" on that one.