Marijuana and alcohol use up for teenagers

American teens smoked more marijuana and drank more alcohol last year than they had in any of the previous 10 years.

A study by the Partnership for a Drug-Free America released a survey on March 2 about the level of marijuana and alcohol used by teens. The group found 25 percent of teens said they had used marijuana within the last month and 39 percent said they had used alcohol. In 2008, 19 percent reported smoking marijuana and 35 percent reported drinking alcohol.

At Media Academy, 13 out of 50 student surveyed, or 26 percent, said that they had smoked marijuana in the last month.

“I like smoking weed because it calms me down and helps people with their anger problems,” a junior whose is being withhold.

In the same survey, 20 students out of 50, or 40 percent, said that they had consumed alcohol within the last month.

In other words, the Media Academy students smoked and drank about the same as the national average.

“Students shouldn’t smoke because after they have smoked, eventually they are going want to do heavier narcotics, then it becomes an addiction and then they might start committing crimes for narcotics,” said Eric DuBois, Media Academy case manager.

Academy, said, “No, never.”

She said she believes that it is very unhealthy and it can make you do things that you wouldn’t do sober.

On the other hand, a Mandela student who wished to remain anonymous, said when she was smoking she felt it had no effect on the way she did things.

However, the student said she noticed that her grades were going down drastically when she smoked.

Indeed, marijuana “kills your brain cells,” said Monica Gonzalez, human resource specialist at the Tiger Clinic.

Gonzalez said there are other negative effects of smoking marijuana and drinking alcohol.

“It makes you lose and gain weight because you get the munchies,” she said.

As for the effect of drinking alcohol, she said, it “dehydrates you.”

Just as some researchers found that teen use of marijuana was on the rise, other scientists discovered a new harm of smoking marijuana

Scientists from New Zealand say that teenagers who use marijuana for six or more years have twice the chance of developing psychosis and other mental illnesses later in life.

The mental illnesses can include hallucinating or schizophrenia.

Some people at Fremont say the results of the study should be a wake-up call to teen users.

“If I smoked weed, I would be worried because I’m not ready to die or go crazy,” said Jasmine Gaines.