Adults’ marijuana use comes with a caveatPosted by On

Ever since Massachusetts voters approved a ballot measure legalizing recreational marijuana use for adults, we’ve been concerned about its trickle-down effect on our younger population.

Teens susceptible to peer pressure or lured by the thrill of using a forbidden substance pose a threat to themselves and others when they take a hit or ingest a pot-laced edible.

An article written by Dr. Maria H. Rahmandar of the American Academy of Pediatrics, recently published in the newspaper, discussed the impact the legalization of marijuana for adult medicinal and recreational use has on tweens’ and teens’ perception of the drug.

Given that marijuana can be used to relieve pain, enhance sleep or cope with the symptoms of a serious illness, do young people assume it’s just another kind of medicine?

As a pediatrician and a parent, Rahmandar writes of her concerns about the health risks of cannabis use by teens, who are still in their formative years.

And what does the doctor think parents and caregivers should know about cannabis? Here are some of the abridged highlights:

• As you might expect, adolescent marijuana use increases with age. In 2022, according to data from the Monitoring the Future survey of substance use behaviors, 8.3% of eighth graders, 19.5% of 10th graders and 30.7% of 12th graders reported using cannabis in the past 12 months.

• It has powerful effects on young brains, which don’t fully develop until about age 25. That’s one of many reasons the…

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