1. Reasons for Cannabis Use and Non-use

The reasons for using cannabis non-medically, as well as the choice not to use cannabis, are complex and can be different for each person.[1]McKiernan, A., & Fleming, K. (2017). Canadian Youth Perceptions on Cannabis, Ottawa, Ont.: Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse. According to the Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction, some of the most common reasons for cannabis use, specifically among youth, include:

  • It is easy to access
  • To overcome routine or boredom
  • To fit in with their peers
  • To feel good (improve their mood, appetite, and sleep)
  • To be more sociable
  • To feel excitement or pleasure
  • To cope with sadness, anger, and anxiety
  • It is available and acceptable
  • It helps them gain an alternative perspective of their experiences

Youth report not using cannabis for the following reasons:[2]George, T., & Vaccarino, F. (Eds.). (2015). Substance abuse in Canada: The Effects of Cannabis Use during Adolescence. Ottawa, ON: Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse.[3]McKiernan, A., & Fleming, K. (2017). Canadian Youth Perceptions on Cannabis, Ottawa, Ont.: Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse.

  • Fear of legal and parental consequences
  • Negative effects on the body and mind
  • To avoid social consequences and stigma
  • To avoid stereotypes of people who use cannabis

References   [ + ]

1, 3. McKiernan, A., & Fleming, K. (2017). Canadian Youth Perceptions on Cannabis, Ottawa, Ont.: Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse.
2. George, T., & Vaccarino, F. (Eds.). (2015). Substance abuse in Canada: The Effects of Cannabis Use during Adolescence. Ottawa, ON: Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse.
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