By University of Michigan | Medical Xpress

Researchers know that lesbian, gay and bisexual individuals are more likely than heterosexuals to use alcohol, tobacco or other drugs, but until now they didn't know to what degree.

New research out of the University of Michigan provides that context by examining the severity of alcohol, tobacco and other drug abuse reported by lesbian, gay and bisexual individuals, and people who aren't sure how they identify.

The study confirms that substance use disorders are more prevalent—and more severe—among sexual minorities in the United States, said lead researcher Carol Boyd, U-M professor of nursing.

"Our findings provide strong evidence that a higher proportion of sexual minority individuals, particularly bisexual individuals and those who are not sure of their sexual identities, have severe alcohol and tobacco use disorders, and those who are 'not sure' also have a higher proportion of severe drug use disorders," said Boyd, who's also the director of the Center for Drugs, Alcohol, Smoking and Health.