Marijuana and Anxiety: What Employers Should Know

Marijuana and Anxiety: What Employers Should Know

In light of the evolving legal framework surrounding marijuana in various states, employers must pay attention to the latest research findings concerning this substance. While a common perception exists that marijuana can alleviate symptoms of anxiety, it is crucial to acknowledge that the association between marijuana and anxiety is a subject under ongoing investigation. Current data suggests that marijuana may not deliver the anxiety-relief benefits as often depicted in promotional marketing for the drug.

Anxiety is a prevalent condition, and several states have recognized it as a qualifying condition for medical marijuana cards. However, recent research, including a 2020 study published in the Canadian Journal of Psychiatry, has shown that cannabis use is significantly associated with an increased likelihood of developing anxiety conditions. Moreover, a 2018 review in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry revealed that recent cannabis use was linked to more severe symptoms in individuals with anxiety and mood disorders.

In 2021, a thorough review of 24 studies examining the correlation between cannabis use and anxiety underscores the complexity of this relationship. Quantitative analysis of 10 of these studies demonstrated an elevated risk of developing any anxiety condition due to cannabis use.

While the evidence suggests a long-term risk of anxiety associated with cannabis use, the diverse study designs and outcomes make it challenging to definitively declare a causal relationship. Therefore, it is vital for employers to consider this information and to stay informed about ongoing research in this area as the relationship between marijuana and anxiety continues to be a subject of ongoing study and evaluation.



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