Legalized Marijuana’s Impact on Teens and Kids: The Facts You Should Know

There is a difference between medical and recreational marijuana. Recreational Marijuana is now legal in seventeen states. It could be the reason for the impacts that are now common with kids. The 2020 review shows that over 68% of Americans support recreational using Cannabis. A number of them were still against it. It is now no secret that the nation should begin looking at the legalized Marijuana’s impact on teens and kids. The opposers of the legalization of the weeds had a concern on the kids denying it. Making Marijuana legal will hurt kids and teens because they will eventually misuse it.

Despite the speculation, experts agree that the rate of marijuana use has come down in the states that have already legalized it among teens. Mark Anderson argues that the legalization creates general acceptance, hindering that curiosity that causes the misuse. After research led by Mark Anderson and his team, the results show that the number of teens using recreational Marijuana had dropped by 8%. Legalization brought about a decrease in use like before when it was still illegal. It implies that the use of recreational Marijuana will decrease as more nations support it. The decline in recreational Marijuana by teens could be because streel level dealers no longer exist, and the dispensaries are taking over. A dispensary will need proof of age. The street-level dealer could only supply without bothering the age.

Many studies are in support of Anderson’s findings, though some teams are refuting. A recent study shows that the teens in the state of California are increasingly using weed after legalization. It could be because middle-aged teens now have the right. After all, their age will allow them to take weed, and they may be doing that out of curiosity. It is important to note that the laws governing the use of Marijuana are still new, and the jury is still at the primary levels of enforcement.

What are the Effects of Marijuana Legalization?

There has been an argument that the increase in the number of teens using Cannabis is liberation. The debate is still on, and more research to affirm these speculations is still a requirement. The researchers have uncovered impacts on Marijuana on teens. Negative mental effects are evident. The consequences for the teens who are misusing them are devastating.

The available statistics about the teens using Marijuana remain at 13% among adolescents ranging from 12-17 years. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration report agrees that it has remained the same for the last few years. It could be a hope to back Anderson’s arguments on the use of Recreational Marijuana has dropped upon liberalization. The number of teens vaping Marijuana is rising now that the product is legal.

There is a big concern about the spiking number of teens who are now beginning to use Marijuana. The number may not have changed, but many teens are now keen on using it. The National institute on drug abuse (NIDA) reported the highest number of daily marijuana use to pose questions on the future of the kids and teens as far as recreational Marijuana is concerned.

Legalized Marijuana's Impact on Teens

Which States Have Legalized Marijuana?

Fifteen states have now legalized the use of Marijuana. The district of Colombia has also legalized it for recreational and adult use. The 15 states are; South Dakota, Montana, Arizona, Vermont, New Jersey, Illinois, Michigan, Nevada, Maine, California, Washington, Oregon, Alaska, Massachusetts, Colorado. Other 22 states have legalized medical marijuana.

Should We Blame Marijuana Legalization for the Rise in Teenagers Misusing Marijuana?

The question above is debatable because we do not have obvious answers. After all, the statistics and the available results do greatly vary. Some studies conclude that teens are vulnerable to thus of Marijuana now that it is legal and attaining the cut-off age for adults. More teens are likely to use Marijuana now than before. At the same time, another research concludes that it will decrease considering how it will streel level marijuana will be replaced by the dispensary based options that will need proof of age. The group that will be using the substance is the 8th and 10th-grade students. No major variation will be experienced with the 12th-grade students.

A study from California’s healthy kid’s survey suggests the minimal impact of marijuana legalization on kids and teens. The study suggests that there was a striking decline in the use of Marijuana upon legalization. Another study that looked at the data from the same research found out that there was a close relationship between legalization and the surge in the number of teens using it. It translated to a lifetime and a 30-day teen marijuana use relationship.

The available results about the legalized marijuana’s impact on teens and kids are mixed. The most promising research that involved over 500,000 people comparing the results before and after marijuana legalization found out that more teens started using the drug after legalization. 25% of the teens also reported cannabis use disorder after legalization, which may be a reason for the surge in use and the negative impact on teens and kids.

Another study conducted by the researchers analyzing the Youth Risk Behavior Study (YRBS) national data had a different conclusion. They all agreed that there was no evidence supporting the increase in teen misuse of Marijuana after legalization. The team was inclined to support Anderson’s research, where they seem to agree that it will instead decrease upon legalization. Another study confirmed the results, and it suggested the limited accessibility because of the age limit for recreational Marijuana.

At the time of a pandemic like a year 2020, there was increased fear and stress. Many teens were isolated, and they end up spending lonely hours. The majority resorted to the use of Recreational Marijuana to liberate themselves from such issues. The pandemic led to limited activities, leaving them with nothing but to indulge in the use of Marijuana. Therefore, legalized marijuana’s impact on teens and kids solely lies on other underlying issues, apart from legalization alone.

Parents should be careful about the way they use Marijuana because it will influence their children. How parents react to recreational Marijuana will determine if the children will follow suit or dump it all together. Teenager and adolescents do not often make their own choices but rather thy do things under the influence.

What Impact Will Legalization has on the Teen Perception of the Drug?

What raises curiosity? of course, it’s the denial and the wish for adventure! It is the same case with marijuana legalization. Teens were curious and wanted to experiment more on the drug when it was illegal. Upon legalization, the curiosity dies, and they start being moderate and reasonable. Many teens are now becoming tolerant and accepting Marijuana as a medicine, but not for the experiment. There is an increase in acceptance, and the perceived risk that existed before is no longer the case. It is good news to note that the findings from Monitoring the Future Surveys find that most teens are disapproving of the use of Marijuana. This is a milestone in answering the teens’ perception concerning the legalization of Marijuana in over 15 states.

What Impact Does Marijuana Legalization Have on Teen Brains?

Marijuana has many beneficial physical and mental effects for patients with anxiety, stress, and depression. Despite the benefits, they won’t miss some negative impacts on the brain. It is best for adults and people with the conditions above but won’t choose the teens. Medical marijuana use is not appropriate for teens and kids. the American Academy of pediatrics already disapproved of that and has warned the doctors against administering it to children.

The teen’s brain is still at a developing stage from birth to mid-20s. At this age, nothing should influence it and therefore disapproving the use of Marijuana for medical purposes because they will yield brain-altering outcomes. Marijuana use by teens and kids will result in abnormal brain development that hinders the proper functioning of the brain. More organizations have come out guns blazing against Marijuana use for teens and kids.

The American Academy of Child and Adolescent psychiatry also come up with a policy statement about Marijuana legalization in 2017. Among the points, they addressed in the policy statement was the adverse effects of Marijuana issues. They noted that teens ad kids using Marijuana are prone to developing a disorder, though in small percentages. Teens are more likely than adults. Therefore, they held a reservation on the use of medical Marijuana for kids and teens.

It is frightening to note that present-day Marijuana has the highest THC potency than the old one. The scientist notes that the old marijuana plant had a 3.8% THC on it. In comparison, present-day Marijuana has a whopping 15% which raises concerns considering what THC can do to the brain. Some vaping products will even have as high as 80%.

Related Topic: CBD Health Benefits: Find Out How It Will Help You in Your Daily Routines

Is It Possible to Recognize Marijuana Use by Kids?

Legalizing Marijuana’s impact on teens and kids is evident from the teens’ behavior after use. There are specific signs that every parent should be aware of when trying to pinpoint if the kid is misusing Marijuana. the most common symptoms are;

  • Reddy eyes
  • Forgetfulness
  • Being noisy
  • Sleepiness
  • Marijuana paraphernalia in the room
  • Drug scents in clothes

if you notice this with your kid, you should seek help from professionals who can help teens and parents struggling with substance abuse.

Final Thought

Legalized Marijuana’s impact on teens and kids is still a topic to be discussed. Many other issues ought to be addressed. The legalization has made it more accessible to everyone. It is not even a surprise to find the elderly getting them for the kids! the consequences need close monitoring. All the stakeholders should be at the forefront in ensuring teens stay safe from the influence of drugs and get all the information they need to know before deciding to get started with the use of Marijuana.

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James Trotta

James Trotta is a graduate of Johns Hopkins University. He is a degree holder in political science. His studies were a success after emerging among the top students in his class with an honors degree. James’ passion was deeply rooted in politics and news reporting, and he immediately joins the giant news company where he worked as a reporter and news editor for three years. The company locates in New York, and he is so much into US politics. James later quits the job to venture into something more focused on the needs of the people.

Trotta Now works as a writer delivering up-to-date news. He writes up-to-date information about politics, business, and entertainment because these are the lead Niches that directly influence people. James also participates in empowering young talents, where his focus is to mentor upcoming talents in the same field. James acknowledges that his happiness is when he sees young talents becoming an inspiration to many.

He is happy to live in New York since it is a center where he gets first-hand information from the US government. James Trotta hopes to be an ambassador of correct and up-to-date news to all US and international consumers.

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