“In examining marijuana use before and after legalization of recreational sales in California, we found that frequency of use did not change significantly overall, including following legalization.”
Year-over-year, “the use of marijuana in all forms … by adolescents [nationwide] did not significantly change in any of the three grades [8th grade, 10th grade, and 12th grade] for lifetime use, past 12-month use, past 30-day use, [or] daily use.”
Authors “found no evidence that RML [recreational marijuana legalization] was associated with [an] increased likelihood or level of marijuana use among adolescents. Rather, among adolescents who reported any use of marijuana in the past month, the frequency of use declined by 16 percent after RML.”
“Adolescent treatment admissions for marijuana declined in most of states. The mean annual admissions rate for all states declined over the study period by nearly half.”
“Taken as a whole, these studies suggest that marijuana legalization has not had much overall effect on marijuana use by children and adolescents, at least during the past two decades.”
The use of cannabis during adolescence is not associated with structural brain differences in adulthood, according to longitudinal data published in the journal Drug and Alcohol Dependence. Researchers concluded, “[T]he patterns of cannabis use typically seen in community-dwelling adolescents does not appear to have lasting effects on brain structure.”
The establishment of medical cannabis dispensaries within close proximity of schools does not make teens more susceptible to using marijuana, according to data published in the Journal of Adolescent Health. Authors concluded, “We did not find empirical support of the associations of medical marijuana availability, price, and product variety around schools with adolescents’ marijuana use and susceptibility to use … in the future.”
State laws reducing minor marijuana possession offenses from criminal to civil violations (aka decriminalization) are associated with dramatic reductions in drug-related arrests, and are not linked to any uptick in youth cannabis use, according to data published by researchers at Washington University and the National Bureau of Economic Research.