Adult Brain Problems and Early Marijuana Use Linked


Researchers have found that using marijuana earlier in life seems to be linked to brain problems later in life:

"Early use of marijuana maybe more harmful than previously realized. According to new research, early users of marijuana may face cognitive difficulties compared to those who start using marijuana later in life or not at all.

Specifically, young adults who being smoking marijuana prior to the age of 16 performed worse on cognitive testing when compared to those who’ve never smoked marijuana before or those who starting smoking after the age of 16 says researcher Staci Ann Gruber, PhD, of Harvard Medical School and McLean Hospital, Boston. Findings from Dr. Gruber’s research was presented on Monday at the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience in San Diego.

Though previous studies have found that early marijuana use can lead to cognitive problems, this is the first study to compare early users to late users. Gruber also noted, ”Early-onset smokers smoked twice as often and nearly three times as much.”

For her research, Gruber compared 35 chronic marijuana users and compared them to 28 healthy volunteers. 2o of the chronic marijuana users started smoking prior to age 16 while the remaining 15 started afterwards."

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