In each state fight to legalize marijuana, the cry comes up “what about the kids”. Now two new research studies give an answer to the question. And the doomsayers are not going to be pleased with the result. Studies show legal marijuana has positive effect on this group.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS), published recently, found that teen use of all monitored substances—including marijuana, alcohol and prescription drugs—has “decreased linearly” over the past decade.
The federal study shows high school student use was trending up from 2009-2013—before legal marijuana dispensaries started opening—but has been generally on the decline since then. The first state recreational legalization laws were approved by voters in 2012, with regulated retail sales beginning in 2014.
Another study analyzed data from the Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health Study, which follows tobacco and other substance use over time among 49,000 US youths and adults. A strength of this study was the longitudinal design allowing a look at changes among the same people over time as opposed to other national studies which compare different groups of people across time.Using marijuana may affect your ability to think and plan, study says
Substance abuse dropped in teenagers between ages 13 and 17, according to the study published in the journal JAMA Network. The study points out using marijuana may affect a youth’s ability to think and plan.
Cannabis use among teenagers ages 13 and 15 dropped by 3.4 percentage points in 2020 compared to 2018 and 2019, while tobacco use declined by about 4 points, the study found. The use of other illegal or misused prescription drugs also fell 2.5 percentage points in this age group. Use of marijuana in teens ages 16 and 17 dropped 7.3 percentage points in 2020 compared to 2018 and 2019. Tobacco use fell by over 10 points and misuse of drugs sank by nearly 3 percentage points. Binge drinking dipped by 1.6 percentage points across the age group.Marijuana use rose in adults but dropped in teens, according to the study.
Everyone agrees teenagers should not be allowed to indulge, and especially over indulge, in alcohol and marijuana as they develop. But fear mongers is interesting considering how long it took to move the drinking age from 18 to 21, despite all the science and common sense. Louisiana, South Dakota and Wyoming had to be dragged into it. Threats were used on the state of the New Orleans “the Big Easy” to get them to comply. Regan signed a bill passed by the United States Congress which would punish any state that allowed persons under 21 years to purchase alcoholic beverages by reducing its annual federal highway apportionment by 10 percent.