Teenagers Aren't Smoking Marijuana

October 8, 2017


... at least, not as much as they used to.

It should be no surprise that there is a fair amount of concern about the effects of marijuana legalization and how it correlates with adolescent drug usage. It's completely understandable because it's easy to assume that increased ease of access will lead to higher usage rates across the board. 

For adults, this has held true. According to the 2016 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, marijuana usage among ages 18 - 34 is the highest it's been since 1985. However, the opposite is true for 12 - 17 year olds. The last time marijuana usage was this low for this age range was 1994.

To be fair, critics are right to be concerned with teenage marijuana usage as drug use during that stage in life is correlated with a whole host of health problems including, but not limited to, addiction, criminal behavior and cognitive deficits. 

But this is data shows a trend that should enthuse recreational marijuana advocates. Furthermore, while marijuana usage amongst adults has increased on a month to month basis, alcohol usage has dropped. In 2016, 55% of adults (18+) drank alcohol at least once per month. This is compared to 56% in 2015. While this drop appears to be small, it is statistically significant. 


Currently, 61% of adults in the United States believe that marijuana should be legalized and 94% believe that adults should have access to medical marijuana. 




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