New research says teens that increase their marijuana intake with age have a higher risk of depression. According to the study, such teens also develop an inability to experience pleasure and also have poor educational achievements later in life. According to the study, men who frequently use cannabis at age 15 but dramatically increase their use up to 19 years; face more risk than those who consistently take the drug throughout their life. Dr. Erica Forbes said that the researchers expected to see those young men who had a high, consistent level use of the drug to exhibit differences in brain function.
However, it turned out that the test subjects who had an increasing pattern of use during their teenage years had the biggest differences. Dr. Forbes, a professor at the University of Pittsburgh, stated that even though most people think that marijuana is not harmful, it may have severe implications for some people’s functioning, education, and mood. In fact many studies show that it may be quite helpful, case and point, many states are lifting the ban on the intoxicant. In the study, scientists from the University of Pittsburgh analyzed 158 men. The men had been initially enrolled in the in the local area’s Women, Infants, and Children Nutritional supplement program, at six to 17 months old.
When they hit 20 years, the study’s participants reported their cannabis intake between the age of 14 and 19. The test subjects also underwent MRI scans to assess their brain function and if it was different from ones who did not take any marijuana. The participants were also examined at 22 years for symptoms of depression, their ability to experience pleasure, and their achievements in education. The results showed that men who did not frequently use cannabis at 15 or 16 years old, but exponentially increase its use up to age 19 are more likely to exhibit depressive symptoms. Such people could also experience low pressure and have poor educational achievements.
Dr. Forbes stressed that the level of education might seem unimportant for an individual who is 20-years-old, it will likely have a huge effect on a person’s quality of life, and socioeconomic status later in adulthood. It is not yet clear why increasing, as opposed to consistent, use of marijuana in a person’s teen is closely linked to depression, low pleasure, and poor educational achievements. Speaking to MailOnline, Ian Hamilton, a drug researcher at York University, said that it could be possible that this research reveals how young people are coping with their depressed moods; by using cannabis with greater frequency to neutralize the feelings and problems facing them.