Record Low in Teen Marijuana Use Despite Growing Legalization
As more states move to legalize recreational marijuana, a new report shows that teen marijuana use has fallen to a record low since 2011. This comes as the first legal cannabis dispensary has opened in New York City, marking the start of what is expected to be one of the country’s most profitable cannabis markets.
The National Conference of State Legislatures reports that 37 states and the District of Columbia currently regulate access to medical marijuana, whereas 21 states plus the District of Columbia allow non-medical adult-use marijuana. Several jurisdictions have seen legislation passed in 2021 and 2022 to allow regulated cannabis sales.
Despite the increasing availability of marijuana products, a federally funded report released last month shows that teen marijuana use has decreased from 2019 to 2021. The report also noted that the “growing availability and potency of cannabis products available on the illicit markets poses an increasing health risk,” and that the “normalization and trivialization of cannabis use” has contributed to reduced perceptions of harm associated with cannabis consumption.
The report also noted that medical cannabis use has increased over the past 7 years, with the greatest increase in states that have legalized it. The authors of the report concluded that clinical practice guidelines should be developed to help counsel patients about medical cannabis use.
Overall, the legalization of non-medical use of cannabis has resulted in increased use and the need for public education about the serious health risks associated with the drug. This highlights the importance of implementing proper regulations and policies to ensure the safe and responsible use of cannabis.
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