Javier Hidalgo Jiménez, Genís Oña, Miguel Ángel Alcázar-Córcoles, and José Carlos Bouso
January 13, 2023
Background and Objective:
An increasing number of countries are deciding to regulate the medicinal and/or recreational use of cannabis (Cannabis sativa L.). However, there is a lack of information on the impact of regular consumption of this substance on public health. In this study, for the first time, regular cannabis consumers in Spain were assessed using health indicators, comparing these data with the general population.
Various items of the Enquesta de Salut de Catalunya (ESCA) and other items related to cannabis use were selected to build a survey and administer it to a representative sample of regular cannabis users in Catalonia.
Most of the indicators did not show any deterioration in the health of regular cannabis users compared with the general population. It was observed that users suffered from more sleep problems and about 40% of the sample would like to discontinue cannabis use, suggesting a dependence pattern. About 30% of the sample was able to discontinue the use of prescription medications because of cannabis. Social support and sleep problems, and not cannabis use, were predictors of depression and well-being scores.
It seems that regular cannabis use, despite contributing to problems related to sleep quality or dependence, does not have a negative impact on public health in a manner detectable using health indicators.
Jiménez, J. H., Oña, G., Alcázar-Córcoles, M. Á., & Bouso, J. C. (2023). Cannabis and public health: a study assessing regular cannabis users through health indicators. Cannabis and cannabinoid research.