Talking to Teens & Families About Marijuana

From the Show: Healthy Children
Summary: Legalization of marijuana is changing, and fast. How do you talk to teens and families about the shift?
Air Date: 4/4/17
Duration: 17:36
Host: Melanie Cole, MS
Guest Bio: Seth Ammerman, MD
Dr. Seth AmmermanSeth Ammerman, MD, is a Clinical Professor in pediatrics and adolescent medicine at Stanford University. Dr. Ammerman is the founder and medical director of the Teen Health Van, a mobile clinic program providing comprehensive primary health care services to homeless, uninsured, and under-insured youth. Dr. Ammerman’s research interests include tobacco and substance use in adolescents; at-risk youth; eating disorders; and use of mobile technology for improving adolescent health.

Dr. Ammerman is a Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), chair of the northern California chapter of the AAP Substance Abuse Committee, and a former member of the national AAP Committee on Substance Abuse. He is a member of the medical honors society Alpha Omega Alpha, and is a Fellow of the Society of Adolescent Health and Medicine.

In 2012, Dr. Ammerman received a Silicon Valley Business Journal Health Care Heroes award. He also received the national AAP Founders Award in 2012 for his work in community adolescent health. In 2014 Dr. Ammerman received a Bay Area Jefferson Award for Public Service, and in 2015 received a further honor of a Jefferson Award Silver Medal.

In October 2015 Dr. Ammerman became Board Certified in Addiction Medicine.
Talking to Teens & Families About Marijuana
Legalization of marijuana is shifting, and fast.

Some state laws have changed, making marijuana legal for adults for medicinal and recreational use. This complicates the discussion within the family sphere.

To clarify, minors cannot receive medical marijuana for specific conditions without written parental consent. Recreational use is only legally permitted for those over 21.

Officially, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) would like more research on the benefits provided by medicinal use of marijuana.

Use of marijuana can change normal brain development. Teens are interested in brain development, making this a great talking point.

Regardless of the legality, it's essential to advise your child against riding with someone who has consumed alcohol or marijuana.

Most importantly, set a good example for your child. You can share your personal experiences with your teen, but don’t go into explicit detail. Have an open discussion in a non-judgmental way.

Listen as Dr. Seth Ammerman joins Melanie Cole, MS, to share how to successfully discuss marijuana with teens and families.
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