Marijuana Use Did Not Increase After Legalization In States: Study



Eighteen states and Washington, DC, have legalized recreational pot.

Recreational pot has become legal for more Americans, but despite this ease of access, marijuana use has not ignited, according to a study released Monday.

An article published in The Journal of the American Medical Association found that there had been no increase in cannabis use in the general population or among previous users after their states legalized marijuana.

Researchers asked about 830,000 Americans over the age of 12 about their reported cannabis use, both before and after recreational marijuana use in their state. The study looked at data between 2008 and 2017.

Washington state and Colorado became the first states to legalize recreational marijuana in 2021, after which marijuana use saw a slight increase among Hispanic and white participants, researchers said.

The study also found that there was no change in cannabis use or cannabis use disorders among people aged 12 to 20 in states that have legalized the substance.

As of September 27, 18 states and the District of Columbia have legalized recreational marijuana use for adults over the age of 21. This year alone, four states, New York, New Mexico, Virginia and Connecticut, legalized the substance.

ABC News’ Dr Ronnye Rutledge contributed to this report.


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