Rising Marijuana Legalization Laws Do Affect Teen Drug Use

Laws legalizing recreational marijuana have grown over the last decade. Altogether, 33 states have some sort of legalized marijuana laws on the books. Only a small amount of the states have legalized for recreational use and most of them have only decriminalized possession of small amounts or growing a few cannabis plants. So the question now has to be asked, is it easier for teenagers to get marijuana and will the numbers of teens smoking marijuana rise?

Teens and Marijuana: Thinking for Themselves

It’s easy these days to for both teens and parents to think that all teenagers smoke marijuana, that’s how media portrays them. However, according to the CDC, around 6% of all high school seniors. That’s nearly 1 in 16 students. Additionally, 67% of 12th graders also report that they disapprove of adults who regularly smoke marijuana.

Teen Marijuana Use Since Medical Legalization

The first marijuana laws to be taken into action were those regarding usage for medical treatment. In 2013, The Journal of Adolescent Health published a study on whether or not legalization was affecting teens use, they found that there was only about a 4% rise in used between the time before and after marijuana was legalized for medical use.

The new legalization laws don’t provide “easy access” as some may assume. Of course there is a small rise, but for the most part, the same teens will continue to use or avoid marijuana no matter how easy or difficult it is to find. It is possible that there will be a rise in the future but based on current data there is no indication of that happening, marijuana use has decreased in recent years, if anything.

If you suspect your teen of experimenting with drugs or alcohol, we provide accurate and confidential drug testing. Call (816) 800-9699 or contact Test Smartly Labs today. You can make an appointment at any of our 5 Kansas City area locations.

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