OCT 29, 2019 5:16 PM PDT

Parent's Marijuana Use Affects Child Drug Use

WRITTEN BY: Kara Marker

Even the most ephemeral marijuana use as a teenager can negatively impact the health and well-being of the next generation. A new study supplies a fresh perspective on the influence of marijuana use where the individual involved is not the only victim of substance abuse.

"Using marijuana in adolescence is associated with a host of other problems in the present and later into adulthood," explained lead author of the studies, Marina Epstein, PhD. "Now we see that echoing through to their children."

Epstein is the lead author of both the newest 2019 study and the 2015 study that began the story of a group of participants that researchers began observing in the 1980s. At the beginning, the participants were merely fifth graders; they continued their participation in the study through adolescence and into adulthood, where they eventually had their own kids.

Researchers started by grouping the participants according to their drug use. Participants were either nonusers, adolescent-limited, late onset, or chronic users. Researchers interviewed the participants and their children about drug habits and attitudes toward drug use. The results were both predictable and puzzling.

Not surprisingly, children and teens of chronic drug users were more likely to use alcohol and marijuana (2.75 times and 4.5 times respectively, compared to children of nonusers). But the observation that puzzled researchers was that of children of adults who only used drugs for a limited time during adolescence. These children were 2.5 times more likely to use marijuana nad 1.8 times more likely to use alcohol compared to the children of the adults in the nonuser group.

Adults from the adolescent-limited group also experienced - to a degree - the negative health and quality of life outcomes associated with chronic marijuana use. However, chronic users experienced the worst of these outcomes; researchers observed unfavorable outcomes in the context of mental health, academic outcomes, financial stability, and criminal and/or risky behavior.

Researchers believe the findings of this latest study are particularly important for public health during a time where recreational marijuana use continues to become legal in more American states and thus, more common. Additionally, discussions of the health benefits of the cannabis plant occur more frequently, but perhaps the problem with adolescent marijuana use has fallen under the radar.

Sources: University of Washington, Psychology of Addictive Behaviors

About the Author
  • I am a scientific journalist and enthusiast, especially in the realm of biomedicine. I am passionate about conveying the truth in scientific phenomena and subsequently improving health and public awareness. Sometimes scientific research needs a translator to effectively communicate the scientific jargon present in significant findings. I plan to be that translating communicator, and I hope to decrease the spread of misrepresented scientific phenomena! Check out my science blog: ScienceKara.com.
You May Also Like
MAR 05, 2020
Cannabis Sciences
How the Ancients Used Cannabis- 8000 Years Ago
MAR 05, 2020
How the Ancients Used Cannabis- 8000 Years Ago
Cannabis is one of the oldest known psychoactive drugs. Used in cultures around the world for thousands of years for var ...
MAR 28, 2020
Cannabis Sciences
Over 90% Cannabis Products Too High for Pain Relief
MAR 28, 2020
Over 90% Cannabis Products Too High for Pain Relief
New research has found that the vast majority of legal cannabis products across the US are stronger than necessary for p ...
JUL 07, 2020
Health & Medicine
Recreational Cannabis: Is There a Heart Health Caution?
JUL 07, 2020
Recreational Cannabis: Is There a Heart Health Caution?
As of May 2020, Cannabis is fully legal in 20 states and has partial legality (e.g. it may be legal as a medicine b ...
JUL 21, 2020
Cannabis Sciences
Teenage Cannabis Use Affects Girls More than Boys
JUL 21, 2020
Teenage Cannabis Use Affects Girls More than Boys
Researchers from the University of Montreal, Canada, have found that cannabis affects the working memory of girls at hig ...
JUL 22, 2020
Immunology
CBD May Reduce Cytokine Storm & Lung Inflammation in COVID-19
JUL 22, 2020
CBD May Reduce Cytokine Storm & Lung Inflammation in COVID-19
Initial studies of cannabidiol’s impact of classic symptoms of lung damage in severe cases of COVID-19 provide a p ...
JUL 29, 2020
Health & Medicine
The Carrier Oil Matters When it Comes to CBD Products
JUL 29, 2020
The Carrier Oil Matters When it Comes to CBD Products
The type of oil that is used to extract and carry the medicinally active ingredients (cannabinoids and terpenes) in cann ...
Loading Comments...