Number of Teens Who Vape Marijuana Doubled in 7 Years

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By Dennis Thompson
HealthDay Reporter

TUESDAY, Oct. 26, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Teenagers person followed the vaping inclination into marijuana use, with caller studies chronicling a roar successful cookware vaping among adolescents successful the United States and Canada, researchers report.

The percent of teens who've experimented with vaped cookware has much than doubled successful caller years, and vaping among predominant marijuana users has quadrupled, according to the study.

Currently astir 1 successful 8 North American teenagers person vaped cookware wrong the past year, and astir 1 successful 10 wrong the past month, according to a caller investigation of information pooled from 17 antithetic studies.

"The prevalence of teen cannabis vaping is connected an upward trajectory successful the U.S. and Canada," said pb researcher Carmen Lim, a PhD campaigner with the University of Queensland's National Center for Youth Substance Use Research successful Australia. "We besides recovered adolescents' penchant for cannabis products whitethorn beryllium shifting from little potent products similar herbal cannabis to highly potent vape lipid and concentrates."

The percent of teens who'd ever tried marijuana vaping accrued from astir 6% successful 2013-2016 to astir 14% successful 2019-2020. During that aforesaid period, kids who vaped cookware implicit the past twelvemonth accrued from 7% to 13%.

More predominant cookware users dove into vaping astatine an adjacent faster rate, with the percent of teens vaping cookware wrong the past period much than quadrupling -- rising from little than 2% to much than 8%.

This caller analysis didn't reappraisal wide cookware usage among teens, truthful it's not wide whether much kids are utilizing cookware owed to vaping oregon if kids who fume cookware person switched to vaping, Lim said.

Experts said it's highly apt kids are switching to vape pens from joints, arsenic the wide fig of pot-using teens has accrued much slowly.

"As some vaping and cannabis are becoming much acceptable successful nine and smoking is little preferred, it seems earthy that young radical would follow this signifier of substance intake," said Patricia Folan, manager of the Center for Tobacco Control astatine Northwell Health successful Great Neck, N.Y.

These numbers came from information pooled from astir 200,000 adolescents who participated successful studies connected cookware usage betwixt 2013 and 2020, researchers said.

Vaping makes entree easy

Addiction experts said it's apt that the factors that made e-cigarettes truthful fashionable among teens has besides driven the summation successful cookware vaping.

The usage of vaping products wide accrued 13-fold successful the United States among mediate and precocious schoolhouse students betwixt 2011 and 2018, researchers said successful inheritance notes.

"The marijuana pen is conscionable truthful overmuch easier to access. You popular it successful your backpack, you instrumentality it out, you support puffing it during the day. Nobody smells it, and you don't truly get that aforesaid level of strength with the coughing," said Dr. Scott Krakower, a kid and teen psychiatrist and substance maltreatment attraction adept astatine Zucker Hillside Hospital successful Glen Oaks, N.Y.

It's besides apt that the continuing question of marijuana legalization besides has contributed to much kids vaping pot, said Linda Richter, vice president of prevention probe and investigation for the Partnership to End Addiction.

"I can't accidental I'm amazed by the meteoric emergence successful marijuana vaping among adolescents, fixed the important displacement successful nationalist attitudes astir marijuana's safety, the expanding availability of unregulated vaping products, and the stealth quality of vaping versus smoking marijuana," Richter said. "Adolescents, on with adults, person been lulled into a mendacious consciousness of information astir marijuana."

The occupation is that cookware vape liquid tends to beryllium much overmuch much potent than dried weed, which connected its ain has accrued successful potency implicit the years, Richter and Krakower said.

"Too galore parents inactive judge that the marijuana that teens are utilizing contiguous is nary much harmful than the marijuana they smoked erstwhile they were teenagers," Richter said. "But the potency of marijuana has quadrupled implicit the past mates of decades and the attraction of THC is acold higher successful today's products, particularly successful vapes and edibles, than it was successful the marijuana they utilized to smoke."

That potency becomes adjacent much troubling erstwhile 1 considers however vape pens are utilized versus smoking, Krakower added.

Rather than furtively smoking a azygous joint, kids are escaped to puff repeatedly connected a cookware vape pen arsenic often arsenic they like, Krakower noted. Not lone does the weed deed them harder, but they are capable to instrumentality tokes disconnected the pen each day.

Parents request to wage attraction to their kids' cookware usage and intervene, Richter said.

"If a kid is utilizing marijuana regularly, parents shouldn't brushwood it disconnected arsenic a harmless phase, but should question assistance and intervene earlier it turns into a marijuana usage disorder, oregon leads to different unsafe wellness and information consequences," Richter said.

Lim and Richter added that regulators and legislators request to measurement successful and much strictly modulate teens' entree to each marijuana products.

"We are astatine a constituent successful the marijuana legalization statement successful this state wherever we tin inactive forestall the worst of what commercializing an addictive substance tin inflict connected kids," Richter said. "For those states that take to legalize the cause for big use, determination are galore provisions that tin beryllium written into the instrumentality and regulations to support younker from being exposed to, accessing and utilizing the drug."

The caller survey was published Oct. 25 successful the journal JAMA Pediatrics.

More information

The Partnership to End Addiction has advice for parents astir teen cookware use.

SOURCES: Carmen Lim, PhD candidate, University of Queensland's National Center for Youth Substance Use Research, Australia; Patricia Folan, DNP, director, Center for Tobacco Control astatine Northwell Health, Great Neck, N.Y.; Scott Krakower, DO, kid and teen psychiatrist, and substance maltreatment attraction expert, Zucker Hillside Hospital, Glen Oaks, N.Y.; Linda Richter, PhD, vice president, prevention probe and analysis, Partnership to End Addiction; JAMA Pediatrics, Oct. 25, 2021

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