Rates of marijuana use, heavy use, and cannabis use disorder depend on where you live

Adult marijuana use rose significantly in states that passed loosely regulated medical marijuana laws (MMLs) according to a new study by Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health and Columbia University Medical Center. Highest increases were reported among adults ages 26 and over. Little change was found in past-month marijuana use among adolescents or young adults between the ages 18 and 25. The findings are published online in the journal Addiction.

Adults 26 years of age and older living in states with less regulated medical marijuana programs increased past-month marijuana use from 4 percent to 6.59 percent after the laws were enacted. No significant change was found in the prevalence of cannabis use disorder among adolescents or adults after states enacted medical marijuana laws, regardless whether programs were highly regulated or “loose.”

Using data from the National Survey of Drug Use and Health from 2004-2013 the researchers analyzed trends over time with particular emphasis on age groups. This included obtaining prevalences of marijuana use outcomes at the state level by year and whether the enacted laws included a highly regulated (“medicalized”) or less regulated (“non-medical”) program. Participants were classified as having marijuana abuse or dependence based on DSM-IV criteria.

Full story of marijuana use rates depending on location at Science Daily

Cannabis Use Disorder: Focus on Treatment as Marijuana Use Rises

As marijuana use and potency increases, the demand for treatment for cannabis use disorder is on the rise. Frances Levin, MD, Kennedy Leavy Professor of Psychiatry at Columbia University Medical Center, explains what treatments are available and who is seeking help for the disorder.

With marijuana use on the rise in the United States, and an increase in potency of the drug, addiction specialists are seeing a rise in the rates of daily/heavy use of marijuana among teens, according to an expert from Columbia University Medical School.

Frances Levin, MD, Kennedy Leavy Professor of Psychiatry at Columbia University Medical Center, says while teens represent about 30 percent of treatment admissions for cannabis use disorder, the majority of patients treated for the disorder are 18 and older. Dr. Levin spoke about cannabis use disorder at the recent annual meeting of the American Psychiatric Association.

Full story of cannabis use disorder at drugfree.org