U.S. Cannabis Use On The Rise: New Survey Shows One In Seven Adults Used Weed In 2017
A new survey has found that one in seven Americans used cannabis in 2017. The report, published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, surveyed 16,280 U.S. adults from a range of ages and backgrounds and their cannabis use in the past year.
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In total, 14.6 percent of those surveyed said they had used cannabis in the past year, and 8.7 percent admitted to cannabis use within the past month. The survey found that overall cannabis use was higher in states where recreational weed is legal; 20 percent compared to just 12 percent in illegal states. Medical use only states saw 14 percent say they had used cannabis in the past year.
The survey also looked into the method of cannabis use that had occurred across the country in the past year. Smoking was the clear winner, with 12.9 percent of those surveyed saying they had smoked weed in 2017. Edibles came in at 6 percent, vaping at 4.7 percent, and a small number of the group, 1.9 percent, admitted to using concentrates. Only 0.8 percent reported using topicals.
Unsurprisingly, a larger number of young people used cannabis compared to old people. According to the survey's results, those between the ages of 18 and 34 had used cannabis the most in the past year.
As an increasing number of states legalize cannabis for either medical or recreational use, public concern is mounting as to whether local and state governments can keep up with the regulations needed to make legal products safe.
Study co-author, Dr. Salomeh Keyhani (University of California, San Francisco) said, "There are increasingly novel forms of marijuana available and the risks of these products to health are unknown."
The limited research on THC, the compound in cannabis responsible for the psychoactive 'high', is one of the areas Keyhani is most concerned about. "THC (the psychoactive component) is very high in some forms of marijuana, the concentrates, for example. We don't understand the impact of products with high THC."
Cannabis use remains illegal under federal law, making it difficult for bodies to conduct extensive research on the plant. States, like California, for example, have implemented various regulations on cannabis products in an effort to control and regulate the legal market, and make products safe for consumers with the knowledge that is currently available. However, with an increasing number of Americans partaking in cannabis use, this most recent survey demonstrates that there may need to be more uniform standards put in place.
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