New Study on Marijuana Shows A Troubling Trend Among Teens

A recent study has found that marijuana use increased among California teens after the state legalized the recreational use of marijuana for adults in 2016. With New Jersey recently passing legislation legalizing recreational cannabis, I am concerned that this will become a troubling trend among youth in New Jersey as well.

The teen brain is actively developing and often will not be fully developed until a person in their mid-20s. According to the CDC, marijuana use during this time period may harm the developing brain. Marijuana has been linked to mental health problems in teens such as depression and anxiety, as well negative effects on cognitive functions, such as coordination and concentration.

Over the next few months, before New Jersey’s cannabis laws take effect, I encourage you to take the time to talk to your children about marijuana and its effects. PDFNJ research has shown that parents who talk to their children for at least 15 minutes a day have children who are 67 percent less likely to experiment with drugs and alcohol.

If you are unsure of what to say or how to start the conversation, our 15-Minute Child Break program gives valuable tools to talk to today’s youth about substance use and misuse. To view the Child Break presentation, please click here. This informative presentation will empower you to effectively communicate with children about the dangers of drugs and alcohol.

Be well.

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