A new study has revealed that young adults who are dependent on marijuana and alcohol are less likely to achieve adult life goals.
The research by UConn Health scientists was presented on November 5 at the American Public Health Association 2017 Annual Meeting & Expo, as mentioned by Medical Xpress.
The researchers came to the conclusion after studying 1,165 young adults from across the United States. They examined data from the Collaborative Study on the Genetics of Alcoholism (COGA) to track the effect of teenage alcohol and marijuana use has on their achievement of life goals, education, full-time employment, marriage and social economic potential.
Researchers found that the individuals who were dependent on either marijuana or alcohol during their teenage year have achieved lower levels of education. They were less likely to be employed full time or get married. Also, had a lower social economic potential.
"This study found that chronic marijuana use in adolescence was negatively associated with achieving important developmental milestones in young adulthood," said study author Elizabeth Harari.
Researchers believe that the dependence on marijuana or alcohol may have a more severe effect on young men than women; as it was found that dependent young men achieved less in all the above measures as compared to dependent women.
"Awareness of marijuana's potentially deleterious effects will be important moving forward, given the current move in the US toward marijuana legalisation for medicinal and possibly recreational use," Harari added.
However, the study is ongoing. Dr Grace Chan, a statistician in the UConn Health department of psychiatry, Harari and UConn Health Alcohol Research Center Director Victor Hesselbrock are currently trying to find out whether there are different outcomes for young people dependent on alcohol versus marijuana. Also, why there were marked differences in outcomes between dependent men and women.