A new study is showing that through the availability of medical marijuana, pot use for students in high school is reaching new levels for the first time in a decade.
In a survey conducted of 47,000 teens, 1 in four admitted to using pot in the last year, which is up over 21% from a 2007 survey. Experts of the study also saw that among the oldest teens in the survey that 1 in 15 used the drug on a daily basis, the highest rate since 1981.
The researchers also asked high school seniors if they have tried synthetic marijuana such as K2, which is more dangerous, and 11% percent said they had.
The survey also revealed that teens don’t think of marijuana as dangerous. Because of that, “we can predict that use of marijuana is going to increase,” said Dr. Nora Volkow, director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse, which funds the annual study.
R. Gil Kerlikowske, director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, said:
“That pot has become more widely used as more states legalize the use of medical marijuana cannot be ignored,” said Kerlikowske. “We know that any substance that is legally available is more widely used,” he said.
In addition, a concern that was found by surveyors is, prescription drugs without medical supervision. In 2011, 22% of high school seniors said they had misused at least one prescription drug at some point in their lives, the rate remained the same as the 2007 survey. About 15% reporting misusing such drugs within the last year, compared with 16% in 2007.