Cannabis use has surpassed cigarette smoking among college students in the United States, according to a national survey.
Daily marijuana use among US college students is rising, and for the first time since data has been collected, their use of pot has surpassed cigarette smoking. In 2014, nearly 6 percent of college pupils were smoking marijuana almost every day, the highest number since 1980.
This figure is up considerably from 2007 when 3.5 percent admitted to the same, meaning one in every 17 university students is now smoking marijuana on a daily or near-daily basis.
Researchers conducting the University of Michigan’s Monitoring the Future study theorized that much of the increase may be due to the fact that public perception of the dangers of cannabis use have shifted dramatically in recent years with its legalization in a growing number of jurisdictions.
When it came to the daily cigarette smoking, only 5 percent reported use of cigarettes, compared with 19 percent in 1999, a drop of nearly three fourths. The experts also compared drug use rates in college students with their noncollege peers.
The researchers found that the prevalence of use for most illicit substances was lower among college students in comparison with noncollege peers. However, non-prescribed amphetamine and alcohol consumption reported higher in college fellows than those who were not enrolled in an educational institute.
“It’s clear that for the past 7 or 8 years there has been an increase in marijuana use among the nation’s college students,” said Dr. Lloyd Johnston, principal investigator. “And this largely parallels an increase we have been seeing among high school seniors.”
Apart from regular users, the number of occasional marijuana users has also increased nationwide. The study investigators said they would continue tracking how the popularity of alternate forms of tobacco is shifting among all age groups. IMAGE/mlive.com