Pediatricians warn about dangers of pot use by kids

With marijuana now legal for recreation or medical use in a majority of states-and access and attitudes toward it relaxing as a result-a new American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) clinical report in the March 2017 Pediatrics equips doctors to advise patients and parents about harms the drug can cause, particularly for teens. "Teenagers are at a critical time of brain development, and they have lifelong impacts from marijuana use during adolescence".

Those trends have led parents to increasingly ask doctors about kids' use, said Ammerman, a Stanford University pediatrics professor who co-wrote the report.

- As the nation loosens its marijuana laws, pediatricians are tightening their warnings about teens and pot.

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The report even goes so far as to argue that "it is best to not share your own histories of drug use with your children." - because after all, being honest with your kids could lead to a reduced IQ, right? Most of these states now allow the use of marijuana for a variety of medical conditions in adults as well as in children (with parental permission).

Many states have recently made significant changes to their legislation making recreational and/or medical marijuana use by adults legal.

According to the authors of the report, the marijuana is not safe for use and it leaves several negative effects of health.

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"Parents will say, 'I use it moderately and I'm fine with it, so it's really benign and not a problem if my kid uses it, '" but "we would rather not mess around with the developing brain", he added. Researchers say that not only are marijuana products three to five times stronger than they were a decade ago, the drug itself isn't safe for the adolescent brain.

As the brain continues to develop until the early 20s there are concerns about what short- and long-term effects a mind-altering drug could have on more immature brains.

With regards to the effects of medical marijuana on children and teens, solid research is still lacking. It's now more concentrated, increasing the risk, the academy says, of overdose and addiction. However Ryan warned that today's marijuana is much more potent, and therefore potentially more risky.

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