Risks are greater for youth younger than 25 years of age. The brain appears to be more susceptible to risks when THC is consumed early (especially before age 16) and frequently.
Your Brain is Your Best Asset, Protect it!
- During youth (roughly 12-24 years of age), your brain may be more sensitive to cannabinoid-receptor interactions.
- Endocannabinoid system plays a big role in brain wiring i.e., making sense of which connections are important and necessary and which ones are not.
- Consuming THC early and frequently before brain is fully developed may disrupt neuro-connections required for optimal thinking, memory, learning, and calculating risks and rewards, although we still have a lot to learn about this association.
For an animated look at how cannabis may increase youth vulnerability to risks, watch the video. Under Construction: Cannabis and the Teen-Age Brain
There is evidence of several associations between early and frequent cannabis use and negative outcomes. More research is needed to better understand the strength of the associations, whether they are causal (that is, cannabis is the sole and direct cause of observed outcomes), and what other factors besides cannabis use are involved.