Why We Should Talk to Our Children About Marijuana

I’d like to pass along a message I recieved today from Dr. Brad Barnes, President of the Rochester Auburn Hills Community Coalition. I know Dr. Barnes and I respect and value his opinions. He has the best interests of our communities and children in general at heart. I thought his message was important so I wanted to share it with you.

Rochester Auburn Hills Community Coalition
President’s Message
Friend of the Coalition;

RAHCC would like to invite you to our Annual Membership Meeting. Save Tuesday, June 11 at 7pm to join us for this important gathering at the District Courthouse building on Barclay Circle. This is your opportunity to meet the Board members and elect officers for the upcoming year. We would love to hear your input on long-term planning and will share our plans for summer projects. Please RSVP to president@rahcc.org or just show up!

Why we need to talk to our children about marijuana

Since the passage of the 2008 Medical Marijuana Law, fewer teens see marijuana use as risky. All forms of marijuana are mind-altering drugs (psychoactive). In other words, they change how the brain works. Below are some important facts that address the risks of marijuana use.

* Misconceptions-teens think “marijuana is natural so it must be safe.” The fact is that marijuana contains 50-70% more cancer causing chemicals than tobacco smoke. Marijuana use compromises judgment which can lead to other risky behaviors.
* Drugged driving-marijuana impairs judgement, motor coordination and slows reaction time. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration states, drugs other than alcohol are involved in about 18% of motor vehicle deaths.
* Brain based changes-marijuana can be especially toxic to a developing teenager’s brain. Use can lead to panic attacks, depression, anxiety and other behavioral health issues.
* Dependence-long term marijuana use CAN lead to addiction. It is estimated that 9% of people who use will become dependent on it. The number goes up to about 1 in 6 in those who start using young and to 25-50% among daily users.
* Academic performance-the more a student uses drugs such as marijuana , the lower their grade point average is likely to be and the more likely they are to drop out of school.

Sobering facts indeed. Please talk to your student about these facts and your expectations as summer is upon us and they may have more unsupervised time.

We wish you a very safe and enjoyable summer! Don’t forget to join us on June 11 for our Annual Membership meeting.

Sincerely,

Dr.Brad Barnes, President
Rochester Auburn Hills Community Coalition