marijuana-treatment-depression-effective-huffpoMedical marijuana use is legal in around half the states and the District of Columbia. In November and December of last year, C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital National Poll on Children’s Health queried adults on the use of medical marijuana by adults and children.

Those in favor of medical marijuana use claim it helps treat symptoms of many diseases including cancer, glaucoma, HIV/AIDS and epilepsy in both children and adults. Those against the use of medical marijuana claim it hasn’t been adequately studied, has potentially serious negative effects, and may lead to addiction, particularly when used by children and teens.

Here are some of the findings of the poll:

  • 10% of those asked knew someone using medical marijuana or used it themselves
  • 7% knew someone who used medical marijuana in front of children
  • 63% felt states should allow medical marijuana use for adults
  • 36% supported its use by children
  • 80% felt it should not be used in the presence of children

The survey didn’t ask why the respondents had their opinions. It is known that the developing brains of children and teens are affected by marijuana use and this may be a part of the reason for the responses.

This is a hot topic and will continue to be in the news. More states are facing the issue of legalization of medical marijuana and three states have legalized the recreational use of this drug. Similar to alcohol, the long-term impact of drug use in children and teens must be taken into account when making decisions on legalization.

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From issue: 30/03-04