The problem of youth marijuana use continues to intensify in the U.S. According to the National Institutes of Health, 36 percent of high school seniors reported smoking marijuana during the previous year and 6.5 percent said they smoke marijuana daily. Among all high school students surveyed, 60 percent do not view regular marijuana use as harmful. As the levels of THC—the active ingredient in marijuana—continue to rise over the past decade, the potential consequences of smoking marijuana to the developing adolescent brain are a serious concern to parents, researchers, and physicians.
To address this growing problem, SAMHSA’s Center for the Application of Prevention Technologies (CAPT) has developed a new suite of tools to help practitioners prevent youth marijuana use in their states and communities.
“Good prevention planning depends on a clear understanding of the research base,” explains CAPT Director Chelsey Goddard. “But finding and understanding the research on emerging problems such as youth marijuana use can be challenging. These user-friendly resources will help busy state-level decision-makers and frontline practitioners apply state-of-the-science information to their work.”
The new suite is designed to help practitioners identify which factors are associated with youth marijuana use in their communities and to assist them in selecting appropriate strategies and interventions. It includes detailed descriptions of interventions that have been shown to prevent or reduce marijuana use among youth, along with a complete bibliography of the literature contained in the suite. Throughout the suite, guidance is provided to practitioners on how best to use these tools to meet the prevention needs of their community. The suite includes the following resources:
- Risk and Protective Factors Associated with Youth Marijuana Use, offering a summary of research findings on factors associated with youth marijuana use.
- Strategies and Interventions to Prevent Youth Marijuana: An At-a-Glance Resource Tool, providing brief summaries of the strategies and associated interventions.
- Prevention Programs that Address Youth Marijuana Use, presenting detailed descriptions of substance abuse prevention strategies and associated interventions that have been evaluated to determine their effects on marijuana outcomes.
- Preventing Youth Marijuana Use: An Annotated Bibliography, providing abstracts for the resources presented throughout the suite.
For more information about these materials, contact Gisela Rots, Coordinator, CAPT Northeast Resource Team, at firstname.lastname@example.org.