You may not have been able to hear it, but a huge sigh of relief just happened over here.
Apparently, smoking pot as a teen won’t stunt your intellectual development. In fact, it probably won’t rob you of a single IQ point, according to the latest research from the University College of London.
The study looked at 2,612 youth; researchers tested their IQs at age 8, and again at age 15. The verdict? They found “no relationship between cannabis use and lower IQ at age 15.” This was true even with heavy usage – fantastic news for those of us whose high-school years more closely resembled Dazed and Confused than Glee.
What researchers did find, however, was a link between alcohol use and lowered IQ. In fact, out of all the factors weighed – others included maternal education and cigarette use – only alcohol appeared to affect IQ at all.
Obviously, this doesn’t mean we should start shoving joints into teens’ hands. The study did show that marijuana users tended to let their grades slip (exam scores were 3 percent lower – not awful, but every point counts). But maybe we should stop demonizing marijuana when its effects are clearly not as devastating as the DEA makes them out to be.
And if I ever have kids, I’d rather find a bong in their room than a bottle of whiskey.