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Rather than recycling their D.A.R.E. lectures from the nineties, it seems like many many baby boomers are getting older, and subsequently experimenting with the medicinal properties of marijuana. For many with chronic pain or even old injuries have found cannabis or edibles to be more effective than traditional, and often highly addictive, prescribed painkillers. From chocolates, brownies, or butter, some baby boomers found themselves stocking up on various treats and consuming cannabis on the regular.
Now, with cannabis being effectively legal in over 30 states and Washington DC, it’s not out of the ordinary for people to consume more of it. In fact, a 2017 study from Marist College and Yahoo News revealed that almost 35 million Americans have cannabis at least twice per month. d While many of us are quick to assume that teens and millennials are driving the cannabis industry , it’s not the whole picture. While teens and millennials make up a significant portion of cannabis consumers, older Americans are also jumping on board due to the wide variety of cannabis products and edibles that are now readily available.
In fact, a study released in September revealed that the amount of cannabis consumed doubled amongst 50 to 64 year old adults (www.time.com) over this past decade alone!
This spike in interest among this demographic has brought serious shifts in weed marketing, education, but also strategies for combating as addiction. On top of that, many consumers are raising new questions and concerns about potential health risks that may occur to older adults. More often than not, adult children and healthcare providers have to face a big question: What will happen now that mom and dad are stoned?
We knew that we would have to face these questions eventually. As weed became slowly de-stigmatized, legalized, and generally more accepted in other parts of the world, it was inevitable that people would use it more. On top of that, thanks to the variations that companies can do now it’s easy to consume cannabis without “smoking pot.”
As many have noted, those that were against pot or don’t smoke it found it easier to try it out when their friend said suggested alternatives. From vaporizers to creams, these products are finding ways to dispel the myths around cannabis.
All in all, people are smoking more weed and with that more questions are raised, especially around older people. And while there are certainly some concerns, most are indifferent in the end. Many of us shrug and simply say “We want our parents to do whatever makes them happy.”