Cannabis Use in Teens Linked to Risk of Depression in Young Adults

Cannabis is the most commonly used recreational drug by teenagers worldwide. In Canada, among youth aged 15 to 19 years, the rate of past-year cannabis use is 20.6 percent, while in England, 4 percent of adolescents aged 11 to 15 years used cannabis in the last month.


Science News. “Cannabis Use in Teens Linked to Risk of Depression in Young Adults.” 13 February 2019. Web. 23 April 2019 


Dad Charged with Child Abuse for Smoking Marijuana in Front of his 6-Year-Old Son on Facebook Live

Two North Carolina men were arrested for allegedly smoking marijuana in front of a 6-year-old child on Facebook Live, the local broadcast station WRAL reports. The 20 and 23-year-olds were each charged with misdemeanor child abuse, according to court documents.

Arrest warrants show that Tyreek J. Carpenter and Donta Dewayne Blue were arrested on Sunday and released on bond. Blue is the child’s parent and Carpenter is Blue’s cousin.


Yahoo Lifestyle. “Dad charged with child abuse for smoking marijuana in front of his 6-year-old son on Facebook Live” 15 March 2019. Web. 18 April 2019 

Psychotic Symptoms in Marijuana Smokers

A small pilot study published September 17, 2017 in Psychiatry Research finds that marijuana can cause a temporary increase in psychotic-like states in people who are at high clinical risk for psychotic disorders. The preliminary study, which involved 12 young adults who reported weekly marijuana use, is the first to test the drug’s effects in people at high clinical risk for psychotic disorders under controlled laboratory conditions.
Marijuana is known to exacerbate psychotic symptoms in people with schizophrenia or other psychotic disorders. Some researchers think regular use of the drug at a young age increases the likelihood that those at high risk will develop one of these illnesses.

Psychology Today. “Psychotic Symptoms in Marijuana Smokers” 30 October 2017. Web. 11 April 2019 

Marijuana, Mental Illness, and Violence

Over the last 30 years, psychiatrists and epidemiologists have turned speculation about marijuana’s dangers into science. Yet over the same period, a shrewd and expensive lobbying campaign has pushed public attitudes about marijuana the other way. And the effects are now becoming apparent.

Almost everything you think you know about the health effects of cannabis, almost everything advocates and the media have told you for a generation, is wrong.

They’ve told you marijuana has many different medical uses. In reality marijuana and THC, its active ingredient, have been shown to work only in a few narrow conditions. They are most commonly prescribed for pain relief. But they are rarely tested against other pain relief drugs like ibuprofen—and in July, a large four-year study of patients with chronic pain in Australia showed cannabis use was associated with greater pain over time.


Hillsdale College. “Marijana, Mental Illness, and Violence” January 2019. Web. 9 April 2019 

Sheriff: Dakota Theriot case is ‘extremely horrific example’ of failed mental health system

With each spin through the revolving door that brings police and the mentally ill together, accused killer Dakota Theriot grew more unstable.

Law enforcement was aware of Theriot before he was accused of killing five people last month. Police and court records reflect relatively minor offenses, such as smoking weed with his parents, to horrifying violence that included beating his wife and threatening to kill his family. He never faced a lengthy prison term or longterm hospitalization. For many offenses, he was never arrested.


The Advocate. “Sheriff: Dakota Theriot case is ‘extremely horrific example’ of failed mental health system 3 February 2019. Web. 4 April 2019 

Cannabis and Mental Health: 2017 Report of the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine

The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine published a report on the health effects of cannabis and cannabinoids.

Here we reproduce the key points of the mental health chapter. You can access the full publication here.

Psychosis and schizophrenia

  • Cannabis use is likely to increase the risk of developing schizophrenia and other psychoses; the higher the use the greater the risk.
  • In individuals with schizophrenia and other psychoses, a history of cannabis use may be linked to better performance on learning and memory tasks.

Bipolar disorder

  • For individuals diagnosed with bipolar disorders, near daily cannabis use may be linked to greater symptoms of bipolar disorder than non-users.

Other conclusions

  • Cannabis use does not appear to increase the likelihood of developing depression, anxiety, and posttraumatic stress disorder.
  • Heavy cannabis users are more likely to report thoughts of suicide than non-users.
  • Regular cannabis use is likely to increase the risk for developing social anxiety disorder.


Psychopharmacology Institute. “Cannabis and Mental Health: 2017 Report of the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine 9 February 2018. Web. 2 April 2019 

CPASA officials oppose marijuana legalization

It’s been about two months since Democratic Gov. J.B. Pritzker took office, and he can already put a check mark next to one of his top priorities: increasing minimum wage.

Now state legislators are turning their attention to his next priority — legalizing recreational marijuana.

One of the leading arguments given by proponents on this issue is that it has the potential to collect myriad tax dollars that could alleviate the state’s poor financial status.

But local drug prevention agencies, such as CPASA (Community Partners Against Substance Abuse), are not buying that argument.

Collectively, their stance is that the human and health risks far outweigh any monetary benefits reaped from legalizing marijuana as a recreational drug.

CPASA member Torri Reinbeck, who is also a public health educator with the Bureau Putnam Marshall County Health Department, said her biggest concern lies among young people. She said she fears that legalizing the drug will only make it easier to get into their hands.

She explained how there’s already an issue with electronic cigarettes and nicotine addiction in the area schools. She leads the Bureau Putnam Power youth coalition, which focuses on drug prevention among students. While schools are constantly battling the issue of keeping electronic cigarettes off school grounds, new cigarette models make it easier for kids to use the devices in school.


Putnam County Record. “CPASA officials oppose marijuana legalization 11 March 2019. Web. 28 March 2019 

Police: Legal marijuana states see more accidents

Some local police officials are worried about stoned drivers on the road as Illinois comes closer to legalizing recreational marijuana.

The News Gazette spoke with Monticello Police Chief John Carter. He said a year ago, a juvenile driver vaping cannabis oil crashed into a house.

He is worried legalizing marijuana could lead to more impaired drivers on the road.

Mahomet Police Chief Mike Metzler told the News Gazette his department sees drivers “almost daily” who have marijuana or vapes with them in their cars.

A recent study commissioned by two Chicago Democrats, state Sen. Heather Steans and state Rep. Kelly Cassidy, showed the existing cannabis industry in Illinois could supply only 35 percent to 54 percent of the adult-use demand.


WAND. “Police: Legal marijuana states see more accidents” 18 March 2019. Web. 26 March 2019 

Mental illness in the family raises marijuana risks. Parents, please talk to your teens.

Nearly all young people whom I treat use marijuana. As a psychiatrist, I’ve cared for dozens of young people experiencing their first psychotic episode, and many are “wake-and-bakers” who use weed throughout the day.

Marijuana is now legal for medicinal use in 33 states and recreational use in 10 states.

Increasingly potent forms of cannabis are becoming widely accessible, and fewer and fewer adults consider marijuana problematic. Recently, 15 percent of 12- to 17-year-olds reported using marijuana, and in 2017, 6.5 percent of them were current users. This means that approximately 1.6 million adolescents used marijuana in the past month.

For anyone with a family history of severe mental illness, long-term or heavy use of cannabis is also associated with increased chances of developing schizophrenia.

Having a parent or sibling with a psychotic illness significantly amplifies the risk of developing schizophrenia. Having grandparents or great-grandparents, aunts, uncles or cousins with schizophrenia fuels that risk. Research shows that initial psychotic episodes can occur two to six years earlier in people who use cannabis daily, particularly among high-potency users.


USA Today. “Mental illness in the family raises marijuana risks. Parents, please talk to your teens. 22 January 2019. Web. 21 March 2019