Teen Use of Marijuana Increased in Washington – But Not Colorado – After Legalization

Teen use of marijuana rose in Washington state after the drug was legalized for adults 21 and older, a new study finds. In Colorado, legalization had no impact on marijuana use by teens, CBS News reports.

The findings come from a study published in JAMA Pediatrics.

In Washington, since 2012, marijuana use among eighth graders has increased by 2 percent and among tenth graders by 4.1 percent. In Colorado there was no increase in marijuana use among teens. The conflicting results suggest a need for more research on the impact of marijuana legalization on teens, said study co-author Magdalena Cerda.

Full story of increased teen marijuana use in Washington at drugfree.org

Drug and Alcohol Use Among Teens at Lowest Rate Since 1990s: Study

American teens’ use of drugs, alcohol and tobacco has declined to the lowest rate since the 1990s, according to an annual nationwide study.

The Monitoring the Future study found marijuana use declined this year among 8th- and 10th graders, but remains flat among 12th graders, USA Today reports.

Full story of teen drug and alcohol use at drugfree.org

Teens Who Use E-Cigarettes Often More Likely to Become Regular Smokers

A new study finds teens who often use e-cigarettes are more likely to become regular smokers and to smoke many cigarettes a day.

The study included 3,084 Los Angeles teens who participated in surveys in the fall and spring of tenth grade, Reuters reports. They were asked whether they had tried e-cigarettes, and if so, how often. They were also asked about regular cigarette use. The researchers found more frequent vaping was associated with smoking two or more cigarettes on the days teens chose to smoke.

Full story of e-cigarettes as gateway to regular cigarettes at drugfree.org

Study Links Teens’ Exposure to Alcohol Ads and How Much of Those Brands They Drink

A new study finds a link between teens’ exposure to alcohol ads and how much of those brands they drink.

Researchers at Boston University studied more than 1,000 13- to 20-year-olds who said they had consumed alcohol in the past month. Underage drinkers who didn’t see any alcohol ads drank about 14 drinks per month, compared with 33 drinks for those who had seen an average amount of alcohol ads, CNN reports.

Full story of teen’s exposure to alcohol ads and drinking at drugfree.org

Wider Use of Medication-Assisted Treatment Urged for Teen Opioid Addiction

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) is recommending that pediatricians consider offering medication-assisted treatment, such as buprenorphine, for teen and young adult patients with severe opioid use disorders, USA Today reports.

Pediatricians who do not prescribe the drugs themselves should refer patients to doctors who do, the group advises. According to the AAP, between 1991 and 2012, the rate of “nonmedical use” (use without a prescription or more than prescribed) of opioid medication by teens and young adults up to age 25 more than doubled. The rate of opioid use disorders, including heroin addiction, also jumped. The rate of fatal opioid overdose more than doubled between 2000 and 2013.

Full story of treatment for teen opioid addiction at APTA