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Is attitude of youth changing towards marijuana use

Is attitude of youth changing towards marijuana use

September 21, 2021

Is attitude of youth changing towards marijuana use

Residential Treatment Substance Abuse

Marijuana, also known as cannabis or weed, is the most popular illicit substance used in the United States. Young adults and adolescent children are evidently recorded among the highest users of marijuana. One of the reasons for this is the changing narrative related to marijuana regulations.  The policies in context to marijuana have been changing from the past three decades.

While some people vociferous oppose the use of marijuana, others advocate its legalization. Hence, the debate is still on whether or not marijuana should be given a legal status or banned completely. The first waves of change in policy regarding marijuana use took place in 1970. Since then, situations have been constantly changing with raging politics over the use of marijuana.

However, marijuana was legalized to be used for medical purposes in the year 1996. Following the trend, 30 states of Columbia legalized marijuana for medical purposes. After Colorado became the first state to legalize marijuana for recreational purposes, several other states followed suit. After Colorado, 10 more states have decriminalized it’s abstract for recreational and medical purposes. This change has created a perception among the common people that marijuana is less harmful.

With the easy availability of the drug, an increasing trend of its abuse has been observed among youth and adolescents. The potential risk of marijuana use is not only confined to adverse physical health condition but it is associated with several complex mental health disorder, including increased incidence of comorbid substance use, exacerbated addiction problems, suicidal tendency and an onset of psychosis. Among children and young adults, its negative impacts on academic performance and cognition have also been observed when there is substantial marijuana abuse by them.

Winds of change on marijuana use

According to a new report released by NIDA (National Institute Of Drug Abuse) at National Institute of Health (NIH), the attitude of young adults are constantly changing towards marijuana abuse as more states are getting it legalized only for adult use. Young adults think that vaping marijuana is fraught with danger than the casual use of marijuana. They are also wary of using other drugs such as cocaine, LSD, heroin or other sedatives and think it riskier than using marijuana.

NIDA has been monitoring the attitude of young adults and adults since late 1970, the data included adolescent children from 13 to 18 years of age. The data evinced that adolescent population considered vaping weed on occasional to regular basis as very normal. With marijuana being legalized in majority of the states, marijuana abuse was at a substantially higher side. In 2020, very less percentage of young adults viewed marijuana use as risky.

Having studied young adults since 1970 on their marijuana use behavior, NIDA observed that youth in the 19 to 30 age bracket used marijuana on a daily basis. Until 2020 marijuana abuse was recorded at the zenith.

The 2020 data showed that 42% of the population used weed at least once in the past year, 27% percent used marijuana in the past month and 9.8% used it daily. According to records the prevalence of marijuana vaping has decreased to 20% for people using marijuana in a year and 11% for people using marijuana in a month.

The record also showed that marijuana abuse declined with the advancement of age. Comparing the yearly statistics of marijuana abuse age group between 19 and 26 recorded highest abuse from 44% to 47%, while age group between 50 and 60 years showed potentially lower marijuana abuse up to 10% to 11%. As shown by the data, men, between 19 to 30 years of age, vaped marijuana more frequently than women. Therefore, men are potentially at a higher risk of marijuana abuse than women.

What are the signs of marijuana abuse?

Prolonged use of marijuana or cannabis can lead to its abuse. However, knowing the signs can prevent the condition from getting worse. Watch out for the following signs of a potential marijuana abuse:

  • Marijuana used for a prolonged period of time
  • Unable to refrain from marijuana usage irrespective of several attempts
  • Uncontrollable urge or desire to vape marijuana
  • Great deal of effort is put in to arrange for the substance
  • Not able to take responsibilities in personal life
  • Avoiding social gathering and leading life in isolation
  • Developing tolerance for marijuana and need for more marijuana to satisfy the desire
  • Withdrawal symptoms taking over life while trying to quit the drug

But, treatment is also possible to thwart the use of marijuana. The treatment for marijuana abuse includes psychotherapy, talk therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), family therapy, and group therapy along with medication. Early intervention is necessary to treat the addiction on time.

How we can help?

Whether it is marijuana abuse or any other substance including opioids, approaching early treatment intervention is the key to an effortless and long-term recovery for patients. Seeking early treatment not only makes the withdrawal symptoms less intense but also increases the chances of a quicker recovery.

At California Behavioral Healthcare, we provide the best residential treatment programs for substance abuse in California. We provide inpatient and outpatient treatment programs, residential substance abuse treatment facility, customized treatment programs, psychotherapies and partial hospitalization programs among others. To get more information on our facilities and treatment programs, you may contact us at our toll free number 866-225-6101.

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