Casual Marijuana Smoking Causes Brain Changes in Youth
the MPR take:
A study in the Journal of Neuroscience has found that in young people, even occasional marijuana smoking can alter the regions of the mind pertaining to motivation and emotion. Hans Breiter, MD, and collaborators from Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital, and Harvard Medical School observed a direct correlation between users who smoked between 1–7 marijuana joints per week and changes to the volume, shape and density of the nucleus accumbens and the nucleus amygdala brain region that control motivation and emotion. Additional research is needed for assessing the long-term consequences of these changes and if abstinence can reverse this process.
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