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Teens use marijuana in multiple ways: Study

ANI | Updated: Sep 30, 2018 21:18 IST

Washington D.C. [USA] Sep 30 (ANI): Turns out, teens who have tried marijuana are likely to have used the drug in more than one form, including cannabis products that are smoked, eaten or vaped.
A new research by the University of Southern California raises concerns about adolescent health amid a booming cannabis market that touts sleekly packaged products claiming an array of health benefits.
Senior author, Adam Leventhal said, "Cannabis use in adolescence increases the risk of chronic use throughout adulthood, addiction and impaired cognitive development. In recent years, there's been a shift in teens' perception. Legalisation and commercialisation of cannabis are fostering the perception that this drug is not harmful."
In a survey of 3,177 10th-graders from the Los Angeles area, Leventhal and his colleagues collected data via questionnaires at 10 Los Angeles area high schools from January to October 2015 - three years before California's 2018 legalisation of recreational marijuana.
Tenth-graders were asked, "Have you ever used the following substances in your life?" Combustible cannabis was worded as "smoking marijuana" (or weed, hash, reefer or bud); vaping was worded as liquid pot, dabbing or weed pen; edible marijuana included drinks infused with THC (the psychoactive compound in cannabis), brownies, butter, and oil.
Of the 33.9 per cent of students who reported ever using cannabis, smoking it was the most popular, followed by cannabis products that were edible or vaporized. Most 10th-graders (61.7 percent) who had ever used cannabis used multiple products to administer the drug.
Notably, 7.8 per cent of cannabis "ever users" had never smoked pot, but instead ingested cannabis via edibles or vaping.
"A key question is whether a new pool of teens who've traditionally been at lower risk for smoking marijuana have been drawn to using the drug in these alternative non-smoked forms," said Leventhal.
Leventhal's previous survey studies have found digital media use is linked to behavioral and attention problems in kids, and that higher concentrations of nicotine in vaping liquid used by teens is associated with traditional cigarette use.
The full findings are present in the journal- JAMA Network Open. (ANI)