Did you know that young people start using marijuana for many reasons? Some may use out of curiosity or peer pressure and some may use as means of coping with anxiety or depression. Despite whatever the reason may be, marijuana has negative effects on young developing brains. When marijuana is smoked, vaporized or consumed, the psychoactive chemical THC quickly passes from the lungs into the bloodstream, which carries it to organs throughout the body and brain. The effects of marijuana could alter your child’s developing brain in multiple ways:
Learning: Marijuana’s effects on attention and memory make it difficult to learn something new or do complex tasks that require focus and concentration.
Sports: Marijuana affects timing, movement and coordination, which can harm athletic performance.
Judgement: Marijuana alter judgement and decision-making skills, which can lead to risky behaviors that can expose your child to other harmful behaviors like use of other drugs or impaired driving.
To get the latest information on how drugs affect the brain and body, visit teens.drugabuse.gov. For 24/7 free and confidential information and treatment referrals, call SAMHSA’s National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357) or visit the SAMHSA Behavioral Health Treatment Services Locator at findtreatment.samhsa.gov.