Marijuana is often the most abused drug amongst teenagers.
Marijuana is considered a recreational drug by many teenagers. Also, it is a drug that they believe is a harmless way to relax and have fun. Compared to other drugs often abused, it is less expensive and easier to obtain. Today, kids are using marijuana younger than ever before which means that, in the long-term, marijuana effects on teens can be far more drastic.
Peer pressure unfortunately contributes to the idea of marijuana use as normal. So, many kids don’t even think twice about it. Unfortunately, there are also a number of myths surrounding the drug that make them think it is harmless.
Teen Marijuana Abuse Myths
There are a number of myths about marijuana that teens seem to think are true. Therefor, they believe this justifies their use of the drug although they may never even consider trying drugs that are heavier.
- It’s natural, so it can’t be bad – marijuana may have some natural properties. But, today there are many additives to the drug. Regardless, it still happens to be a drug. However, with things being added into drugs, teens also never know what they might be ingesting.
- Marijuana doesn’t cause any problems – Some teens believe that marijuana won’t actually have an effect upon their life. However, marijuana has notable physical, social, learning and behavioral problems in growing teens.
- Marijuana isn’t addictive – Many people have the question ‘how addictive is marijuana?’; because it’s not a “real” drug (so teens think) they also believe that this drug can’t be addictive. Studies have shown that despite this common belief, people can become addicted to marijuana. Teens in particular can be vulnerable to addiction when it’s used to cope with their problems or emotions.
- Marijuana doesn’t make you lose control – teens believe that marijuana is a safe drug because it doesn’t lead them to get out of control like alcohol or other drugs. Studies have proven that it does effect motor and judgement skills. The effects of the drug can also last 4 hours.
- You can’t get in trouble for using marijuana – teens seem to believe that if caught with marijuana they won’t get in trouble. Marijuana is no different than any other drug legally. They can end up receiving a fine or a criminal or misdemeanor charge for possessing marijuana.
Teenage Marijuana Use and How to get Treatment
With all of the myths about marijuana debunked, the bottom line is that it’s an illegal and addictive drug. Treatment for teenage marijuana use and dependence needs to be a priority. Too often marijuana abuse is ignored by parents and marijuana abuse is seen as not being a big deal. In truth, marijuana is a gateway drug that opens the door to added dangers and many other types of substance abuse encounters.
Moreover, the marijuana of today is so much stronger than the marijuana of the sixties and the seventies. In some ways, it’s a whole different drug and much more dangerous. Teens using marijuana should get the help they need to stop using marijuana even if they are unable to do so on their own. Because they are at such an integral part of their lives, one supposedly “harmless” drug could end up destroying their life. Parents and/or all other guardians need to encourage treatment options and help them get the help they need in order for teens to not fall victim of serious marijuana use.