Many of the participants were born in Colorado and Minnesota and have since moved, and when they surveyed the number of days they had used cannabis in the past six months before and after 2014, the scientists initially found that their use of cannabis was We found that the volume increased by about 24%. Recreational cannabis use in states with and without legalization. In addition to Washington DC and Puerto Rico, nearly every state was represented based on where respondents lived at the time of the survey.
The study also included 111 pairs of identical twins, one living in a state that has legalized recreational marijuana and the other in a state that has not. Among identical twins, researchers found that use increased by about 20% in states that legalized recreational cannabis compared to states that didn’t.
Because identical twins share so many similarities, that percentage is a more accurate estimate of the causal link of cannabis legalization to cannabis use, says researchers now at the University of Helsinki, Finland. One lead study author, Stephanie Zellers, said:
Identical twins share the same genes and often share the same type of upbringing, and both can influence how often someone uses cannabis, said the University of Minnesota at the time of the project. Zellers, who was a PhD candidate in psychology at
“That 20% estimate comes from an analysis that controls for measured and unmeasured variables, so it is the most accurate estimate of the causal impact of cannabis legalization on cannabis use.” said Zellers.
Many states that have legalized recreational cannabis, such as Colorado, have a sufficient number of dispensaries, making it easy to purchase, a factor that may have contributed to the rise in use. Yes, says Zellers.
Legal consequences, such as fines and imprisonment, are also unlikely to affect increased use in recreational states, she added.
“Additionally, the presence of recreational policies influences perceptions of cannabis use,” Zellers said.
Impact of legalization on use
As more states legalize recreational cannabis use, it’s important to recognize how that legalization affects consumption, said Nora, director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse at the National Institutes of Health. Dr. Volkow said:
“This knowledge can be used to inform strategies for enforcing legalization while minimizing potential harm,” said Volkow, who was not involved in the study.
The statistic could also help researchers understand how recreational use affects rates of cannabis addiction, she said.
In states where recreational use is legal, advertisements often label the drug as safe, Volkow said.
More research is needed on the safety and health effects of cannabis before people jump to conclusions about its safety. she said.
not black and white
“People like to say that all cannabis is either good or bad,” Volkow said. “But in biology there is no black and white. There is a lot of gray.”
Frequent or long-term cannabis use has been linked to health conditions such as chronic bronchitis and schizophrenia, she said.
However, usage has also been shown to be effective in treating some pain conditions, such as nausea and vomiting, Volkow said.
Zellers said he hopes to do more research into the effects of increased cannabis use on conditions such as mental health and addiction.