America’s Invisible Pot Addicts
More and more Americans are reporting near-constant cannabis use, as legalization forges ahead.
The number of adults with a marijuana-use disorder has doubled since the early 2000s, and the number who consume pot daily or near-daily has increased nearly 50 percent. This worries public health officials concerned about “increasingly permissive cannabis legislation, attitudes, and lower risk of perception,” as well as “increasingly potent options available, and the striking number of constant users.”
Users or former users describe “lost jobs, lost marriages, lost houses, lost money, lost time. Foreclosures and divorces. Weight gain and mental-health problems,” writes the author of this article in The Atlantic. Perhaps the biggest problem for such users is having to convince others that the problems they are suffering result from their marijuana-use disorders.
Experts worry that the way states are regulating legal marijuana invites such problems. Says Keith Humphreys, professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Stanford University, “’Here, what we’ve done is we’ve copied the alcohol industry fully formed, and then on steroids with very minimal regulation. The oversight boards of a number of states are the industry themselves. We’ve learned enough about capitalism to know that’s very dangerous.”
Many improvements could be made, including most importantly “listening to and believing the hundreds of thousands of users who argue marijuana use is not always benign.”
Source: The Marijuana Report 22.08.2018