Use of cannabis is stable or increasing in developing countries and declining in rich countries, finds study published in Addiction.
The study looked at cannabis use among 15-year-old adolescents in thirty European and North American countries in 2002, 2006, and 2010. The overall results showed a significant decline in cannabis use. Affluent countries in Western and Southern Europe and North America (Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, the United Kingdom, USA) showed a decrease in frequent cannabis consumption among 15-year-old boys and/or girls.
But the emerging market countries that have recently experienced a rapid increase in their GDP showed stable or increasing cannabis use. In three of the twelve former communist countries in Eastern, Central, and Southern Europe, cannabis use increased among boys (FYR Macedonia, Latvia, Lithuania) and in one, it increased among girls (Russia). In the remaining nine countries, cannabis use among 15-year-olds appears to have stabilized over time. Adolescents from less affluent countries seem to have adopted consumption patterns consistent with their peers in richer countries.