Facebook Poll Helped Researchers Study Marijuana Trends In Adolescents

Via poll on Facebook, researchers have uncovered some additional information about adolescents who use marijuana and products infused with its compounds, like THC, which causes the psychoactive effects. Most notably, they discovered that teens are more likely to try different methods of ingestion, like edibles, in states where recreational marijuana is legal for adult use. Additionally, they are more likely to try these methods at a younger age than those who live in states without a legal marijuana market.

Dartmouth researchers’ intentions behind this poll were two-fold:

1). To see if Facebook polling is a reliable way to reach participants of various backgrounds

2). To obtain a better understanding of how marijuana legalization can impact the children in these communities

“If it is true that certain components of legalization change the way young people use cannabis, then we need to devote more resources to understanding the important consequences (good or bad) of the specific provisions included in the diverse cannabis laws that are emerging across the country,” says lead author of the study Jacob Borodovksy. Borodovsky is a PhD candidate at The Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice and the Center for Technology and Behavioral Health.

Researchers examined links between marijuana laws and the consumption of marijuana in teens, and found that states with more accessible dispensaries are seeing more adolescents partaking in the plant and infused products, and at younger ages.

“Using social media to disseminate web surveys is a useful epidemiological research method. It allows us to quickly collect geographically diverse data on cannabis-related questions that aren’t asked in the traditional federally-sponsored drug use surveys,” Borodovksy explains of the role that Facebook played in the conduction of this eye-opening poll. The use of social media to gain such information and insight is something that he and his colleagues would like to see implemented more often in our search for knowledge regarding the plant and its effects on society at large.

Click here for a more in-depth analysis of the Dartmouth researchers’ findings.

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