The following is excerpted from an online article posted by HealthDay.
Pot use among U.S. minors increases when states legalize recreational cannabis for adults, according to a new study.
University of California, San Diego researchers tracked more than 6,900 youths and almost 15,000 adults, using data from a national assessment. The team found that in states where recreational cannabis use was legal for those 21 and up, young people ages 12 to 20 were more likely to use pot, even though it was illegal for those ages. Adults also had an increased likelihood of cannabis use.
“Our findings provide useful information to policymakers and public health practitioners interested in understanding the consequences of legalizing recreational cannabis,” said principal investigator Yuyan Shi, an associate professor at UC San Diego School of Public Health and Human Longevity Science.
“It’s especially concerning that increased cannabis use occurs among young people because of the detrimental health effects associated with cannabis use at a young age, including impaired respiratory function, cardiovascular disease, and adverse effects on mental health,” Shi said in a university news release.
The findings were published online in Addiction.