Fewer drug users are collecting syringes from NHS needle exchanges.
Around 234,000 people attended "injecting equipment provision outlets" during the 2010-11 financial year, down 11% on the previous 12 months, according to NHS data.
The outlets were established to cut down on diseases caught by sharing needles and to try to reduce the number of needles discarded in public places.
The health service said 4.51m needles and syringes were distributed in 2010-11, down from 4.68m the previous year. NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde gave out the most needles: 1.27m, 10,000 fewer than in the previous year.
The largest reduction was in NHS Ayrshire & Arran where the number of needles distributed were cut by almost half: down 178,000 to around 200,000.
Over the data period, users at around 50% of the needle exchanges injected opiates such as heroin, stimulants such as cocaine or amphetamine and performance/image-enhancing drugs such as steroids. One in five (22%) users attending the needle exchanges were female, the same rate as in the previous 12 months.
The health service gave out more other drugs paraphernalia such as spoons, used for "cooking up", and filters, used for soaking up impurities, although distribution of citric acid, used to dissolve heroin, fell.
Other new NHS figures show that 3445 naloxone kits were distributed across Scotland in the first year of a government programme. The rescue medicine can save comatose heroin addicts with a single injection.
Naloxone has been distributed through a government-funded programme since November 2010 and is given to people at risk of overdosing. The kits can be given to family, friends or carers as long as consent is given by the person deemed at risk.
Community Safety Minister Roseanna Cunningham said: "While the latest statistics indicate a reducing trend of drug use amongst young people and adults, we know that problem drug use remains a significant problem to be addressed.
"Our naloxone programme is world leading. Naloxone offers the chance to save a life and sends a clear message to individuals that their lives matter. It is not the solution to drug-related deaths but it is an important intervention within a range of available treatment and support which can help reduce harm, encourage engagement with drug services and support people towards recovery."
In a report published in May, the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs recommended to the UK Government that naloxone should be made more widely available to reduce the number of people suffering fatal drug overdoses.
Scottish Conservative health spokesman Jackson Carlaw said: "These numbers show there are almost as many needles handed out in Scotland as there are people living in this country. We cannot simply keep feeding the beast and hoping the problem will go away, because it will not.”