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Marijuana Use in Young Adults: What Do We Know?

[ Vol. 9 , Issue. 2 ]


Michael Wenzinger* and Fayola Fears   Pages 103 - 114 ( 12 )


Cannabis is the most commonly used illicit drug in the United States. Over the past decade its use has increased, with young adults/college aged individuals having the highest proportion of users compared to any other age group. Given the high rates of usage in this age group, cannabis use is an important aspect of mental and physical health in collegeaged adults. Current evidence indicates that marijuana use, especially early and dosedependent use, can have significant negative ramifications on general functioning, academic performance, psychiatric wellness, and may be causally related to development of other substance use disorders and risky behaviors. No strong evidence supports marijuana as a beneficial treatment for any psychiatric indication, however there is evidence supporting the use of cannabidiol (CBD) in illnesses such as epilepsy. Providers must be well apprised of the current evidence base for both detecting and treating marijuana use disorder given its increasing prevalence and decreasing perception of risk. Screening of cannabis use disorder and treatment with appropriate therapy is highly important for college mental health.


Cannabidiol (CBD), cannabis, college mental health, marijuana, psychosis, young adults, Δ9- Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).


Department of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, Washington University School of Medicine, Saint Louis, MO, Department of Psychiatry, Washington University School of Medicine, Saint Louis, MO

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