Experts Battle Rising Marijuana Addiction Rates

By Staff Writer

The country continues to battle rising marijuana addiction rates among adolescents, and experts say it is going to be an uphill fight. The cultural mores of the day and the availability of the drug make stopping its abuse a challenging task for prevention workers.

Nannette Stam, a rehab worker in Southern California, recently wrote in the North County Times that more teens are abusing the drug than ever before and she blamed the trend on the widespread acceptance of marijuana use that permeates the culture. Additionally, young people report finding the drug easier to obtain than ever before.

This is particularly troubling, she said, because marijuana is actually more addictive than people realize. Stam said that many teenagers who start using the drug at a young age end up being life-long abusers or begin using harder drugs.

Marijuana addiction is the second most common reason for seeking help from rehab programs, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. The numbers confirm that the drug can be damaging and result in a powerful dependency.