JUN 24, 2021 10:00 AM PDT

Cannabis Use in Military Vets on the Increase

WRITTEN BY: Angela Dowden

Recently it was revealed that young women are the emerging big users of cannabis. To that, add an older, largely male demographic — that of military veterans.

According to research in the journal Addictive Behaviors the number of U.S. vets who are using cannabis jumped by a third, from 9 percent  in 2014 to 12 percent in 2020.

Researchers — from the University of California, San Diego and Yale University’s National Center for PTSD — carried out their analysis by looking at 4,069 veterans ages 22-99 years enrolled in the 2019-2020 National Health and Resilience in Veterans Study, a nationally representative survey.

The researchers reported on veterans' cannabis use over the last six months, whether or not they were in possession of a medical cannabis card, and if they had any symptoms of cannabis use disorder.

Despite the big 33 percent  jump in cannabis use between 2014 and 2020, the researchers found that just 1.5% were enrolled in a state-approved medical cannabis program. In some ways this is unsurprising given the sparsity of these schemes and the difficulty patients can have in meeting the criteria to enrol. Moreover there is an irony here:  Veteran Affairs doctors still cannot recommend cannabis to patients at agency-run hospitals as it remains federally outlawed.

Those who were in possession of a medical cannabis card were more likely to be combat veterans, black veterans, and those with physical disabilities.

Cannabis use in general was higher in younger veterans and those with psychiatric conditions.

Some veterans did run into problems with their cannabis use,  especially those with depression. but the numbers were fairly low —  2.7 percent of vets using cannabis screened positive for cannabis use disorder.

“The estimated prevalence of cannabis use in veterans — nearly 12% — is higher than the most recently reported estimate (9% in 2014),” the researchers concluded. “Veteran cannabis use may be increasing and is particularly prevalent among veterans with psychiatric conditions”.

 Sources: Ganjapreneur, PubMed

 

 

About the Author
  • I'm a journalist and author with many year's experience of writing for both a consumer and professional audience, mostly on nutrition, health and medical prescribing. My background is food science and I'm a registered nutritionist.
You May Also Like
JUL 08, 2021
Health & Medicine
Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome Is Helped by Hot Pepper Cream
JUL 08, 2021
Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome Is Helped by Hot Pepper Cream
A new research review suggests that capsaicin cream, rubbed into the abdomen, may help with the symptoms of cannabinoid ...
JUL 11, 2021
Drug Discovery & Development
Antibiotic Resistance May Be Passed Between Dogs and Owners
JUL 11, 2021
Antibiotic Resistance May Be Passed Between Dogs and Owners
Household pets may act as a reservoir for mcr-1, a gene that is resistant to a last-resort antibiotic, colistin. The fin ...
JUL 12, 2021
Cell & Molecular Biology
A Molecule From the Gut Microbiome May Fight Tumors
JUL 12, 2021
A Molecule From the Gut Microbiome May Fight Tumors
The more we learn abut the gut microbiome, the more it seems that the microorganisms in our gastrointestinal tracts can ...
JUL 15, 2021
Immunology
Your Immune System Can't Deal With All the Plastic You're Eating
JUL 15, 2021
Your Immune System Can't Deal With All the Plastic You're Eating
Microplastics—tiny fragments of plastic, less than five millimeters in diameter—pollute our environment and, ...
JUL 27, 2021
Immunology
Rethinking Immune Responses Involved in Skin Hypersensitivity
JUL 27, 2021
Rethinking Immune Responses Involved in Skin Hypersensitivity
A study by immunologists at the University of Copenhagen has revealed a never-before-seen immune pathway invol ...
JUL 29, 2021
Drug Discovery & Development
What is Ivermectin and Can it Treat COVID?
JUL 29, 2021
What is Ivermectin and Can it Treat COVID?
Lab tests in 2020 found that the widely available drug ivermectin had a weak effect on the SARS-CoV-2 virus and that unf ...
Loading Comments...