Scientists from the University of Bath found that as the strength or potency of cannabis products has increased internationally over the years, so have rates of people being treated for cannabis addiction.
The research is published in The Lancet Psychiatry and was conducted by Kat Petrilli et al.
After alcohol and nicotine, cannabis is the most widely used drug globally.
Cannabis potency refers to the concentration of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in cannabis—the key psychoactive drug it contains.
Recent studies have found that the concentration of THC in cannabis has increased significantly over time, meaning that cannabis used today is typically much stronger than it was previously.
In the study, the team analyzed the link between the types of cannabis people use and their addiction and mental health problems. Their work draws on 20 studies involving almost 120,000 people.
They found that people who use high-potency cannabis are more likely to experience addiction than those using low-potency products.
It also suggests that people using high-potency cannabis are more likely to experience a psychotic disorder, such as schizophrenia.
These findings may help to explain why more people have received treatment for cannabis problems over recent years.
Data from the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction show a 76% increase in people entering treatment for cannabis addiction in the past decade.
Based on these new results, the researchers argue that public health guidelines and policies to help make cannabis use safer should be encouraged.
These results are important in the context of harm reduction, which aims to minimize the negative consequences associated with drug use.
If you care about cannabis, please read studies that what you need to know about cannabis and heart attack, and CBD from cannabis may help inhibit COVID-19 infection.
For more information about cannabis, please see recent studies that medical cannabis could help reduce depression, and results showing this stuff in cannabis may protect aging brain, treat Alzheimer’s.
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