Prevention Topics

Marijuana Abuse Prevention

Nationally, marijuana-use among teenagers is rising, and it is most used by young adults, ages 18 to 35, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). Marijuana is a mixture of dried leaves, stems and seeds from the hemp plant. Of the approximately 400 chemicals in marijuana the main psychoactive (mind-altering) chemical is delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC. It is the chemical believed to affect the brain’s functions and distort how the mind perceives the world. Research also shows other health risks associated with marijuana youth by young people, including a negative impact on education and employment outcomes, as well as increased risk for addiction and vehicle crashes. Local, state, national, and international policies, practices, laws, and norms are believed to have potential related to use patterns. As such, comprehensive prevention planning is recommended to include social, cultural, and environmental considerations in all community efforts.

Below is a short list of useful websites and resources specific to Marijuana Use Prevention. Subscribe to stay informed of updates and send your requests and ideas to

National Institute on Drug Abuse

According to SAMHSA's 2014 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), 22.2 million (8.4%) of people reporting marijuana use were ages 12 or older in 2014. This is up from 6.2% of users in 2002, and 44.2% of youth, ages 12 and older report having used marijuana in their lifetime, making it the most used illicit drug.

The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) offers a research report and other resources on marijuana abuse, and NIDA’s background on the substance and its use can be found at A fact sheet and information for parents can be found on their website as well.

Smart Approaches to Marijuana

Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM), is a bipartisan, organized group of professionals working in mental health and public health, with the vision of a society where marijuana policies are aligned with the scientific understanding of marijuana’s harms, and the commercialization and normalization of marijuana are no more. SAM’s mission is to educate citizens on the science of marijuana and to promote health-first, smart policies and attitudes that decrease marijuana use and its consequences. Learn more about SAM and marijuana abuse at

Addiction Technology Transfer Center Network

The ATTC is a resource for professionals in the addictions treatment and recovery services field, established in 1993 by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). The ATTC Network is made up of Regional Centers, National Focus Area Centers, and a Network Coordinating Office. ATTC’s vision is to unify science, education and service to transform lives through evidence-based and promising treatment and recovery practices in a recovery-oriented system of care. The mission of this network includes:

  • Accelerate the adoption and implementation of evidence-based and promising addiction treatment and recovery-oriented practices and services;
  • Heighten the awareness, knowledge, and skills of the workforce that addresses the needs of people with substance use or other behavioral health disorders; and
  • Foster regional and national alliances among culturally diverse practitioners, researchers, policy makers, funders, and the recovery community.

Literature related to marijuana abuse prevention can be found at



44% of youth, ages 12 and older report having used marijuana in their lifetime, making it the most used illicit drug. (

  • 44.41% of Kansas high school seniors reported believing there is no risk to trying marijuana in 2017 (KCTC).
  • In 2017, 13.2% of Kansas 6th, 8th, 10th, and 12th graders reported having tried marijuana in their lifetime (KCTC).
  • In 2017, 26.91% of Kansas 6th, 8th, 10th, and 12th graders reported thinking there is no risk to people harming themselves (physically or in other ways) if they try marijuana once or twice, and this number has seen an increase in the past year (KCTC).
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