Marijuana and the Teenage Brain

DVD, 2014, HRM, 23 minutes, grades 7 – college

This program informs students about the latest research on the effects of marijuana on the brain. Animated graphics clearly show how THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, hijacks the brain’s endocannabinoid system and harms the functioning of different parts of the brain associated with coordination, cognition and intelligence, and mental illness. Clinicians who treat marijuana users forcefully explain that it’s possible to become addicted to marijuana and that the risk of addiction is higher for teenagers because their brains are not yet fully developed. The author of a long-term study cites research that shows that people who started using marijuana as teens show an average loss of 8 points in IQ. Recovering marijuana addicts provide a human face to the effects of marijuana as they describe why they started using and how use led to dependency and addiction. Also includes teacher’s resource book, student handouts and pre/post tests in digital format.

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