Tuesday, July 04, 2017


As more states legalize the recreational use of pot, the AAP worries that teenagers will think use of marijuana is OK

A report by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) last February expressed concern about an increased use of marijuana by teenagers now that recreational use of pot is or has been legalized in a number of states.

From the AAP report:

Marijuana is not a benign drug, especially for teens. Their brains are still developing, and marijuana can cause abnormal and unhealthy changes,

Adolescents who use marijuana regularly can develop serious mental health disorders such as addiction, depression and psychosis. Marijuana causes dulled sensory awareness, motor control, coordination, judgment and reaction time, all of which can cause accidents involving teens who drive. Marijuana can impair lung function. It also causes decreased short-term memory and concentration, attention span and problem-solving skills, which can interfere with learning.

In the past few decades, the concentration of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive substance in marijuana plants, has increased considerably. Research shows it rose from roughly 4 percent in 1995 to 12 percent in 2014, and current strains contain concentrations as much as 20 percent-- increasing the risk of overdose and addiction.

Overall, 9 percent of people experimenting with marijuana become addicted. That percentage increases to 17 percent among people who began using marijuana in adolescence, and to 50 percent among teens who smoke marijuana daily.

The AAP is worried that some pot smoking parents will believe that since the recreational use of marijuana is now legal, it is OK for their kids to smoke the weed.

On July 1, Nevada became the latest state to legalize recreational pot. California will follow on January 1, 2018. Look for a significant increase in the use of marijuana by teenagers in those states, especially in free-wheeling California.

The AAP did not concern itself with the problem of pot being a gateway drug. Legalized pot will not only increase teen use, but you can also look for an increase in the use of heroin, meth and designer drugs among kids.

The AAP report is just one more example of why legalizing marijuana is a really bad idea.

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