Concerns Rise Over Adolescent Cannabis Use Ahead of “4-20” Celebration

ST. PAUL, Minn. – As “4-20” approaches, a day celebrated by marijuana users, there are growing concerns about the lack of education surrounding cannabis use among adolescents. Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation counselor Liz Walker highlighted the issue, noting an increase in cannabis use disorder among young individuals, some as young as 13 years old. This disorder can lead to negative impacts on daily life and, in severe cases, to psychosis or Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome (CHS).

Walker also mentioned seeing more aggression and procrastination in cannabis users, with some individuals believing that using cannabis while abstaining from other substances, known as “California sober,” is acceptable. However, this approach does not constitute sobriety, especially given the increased potency of today’s marijuana. Social media plays a significant role in influencing teens, with the fear of missing out (FOMO) often driving them to use substances. Walker emphasized the importance of addressing these misconceptions and educating youth about the risks associated with cannabis use, especially considering its potential impact on mental health among teenagers.

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