More High School Seniors Are Vaping Cannabis In States Where Adult Use Is Permitted 

In Education

A new survey has shown that many high school students in the US are vaping marijuana in the states that have legalized cannabis for medical uses only relative to high school seniors in states where recreational use is allowed.

Cannabis vaping among teens is widespread in adult and prohibited states 

According to researchers from Washington State University, 27% of year 12 high schoolers vape cannabis, relative to 19% of students in states banning marijuana or permitting cannabis or recreational use. 

Christian Maynard, first study author, and WSU sociology Ph.D. student, said that over a quarter of teenagers in medical states vape marijuana, surprisingly a huge number. Maynard explained that they expected adult and medical use states to have similar statistics. However, the researchers didn’t establish any significant difference between adult use and prohibited states. 

The study also examined a smaller group of 556 respondents who responded to questions regarding the perceived risks and availability of marijuana vaping devices. They discovered that 31% of high school students in states that permit the medical use of marijuana perceived regular marijuana use as posing a serious risk. In comparison, 62% reported having instant access to marijuana vaping cartridges or “carts.”

Access to cannabis vaping cartridges is the reason for increased vaping

Surprisingly in both adult use and prohibited states, the number of high school seniors who reported easy availability of cannabis vaping cartridges was 52%. In most instances, cannabis vaping was risky, with 36% and 40% of those in adult use and prohibited states considering it risky. 

Although the Study didn’t identify the reasons for the high prevalence of vaping among teens in medical cannabis states, Maynard indicated that there would be a range of factors in play. She explained that among the reasons that could be contributing is the notion that cannabis is medicinal. The other factor could be available with adult uses states offering legal marijuana to a variety of people which in turn tamps the illegal market. However, more research is necessary to establish the reasons behind the difference in cannabis use.

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