Does smoking pot make you stupid? New research suggests that lighting up joints on a regular basis may lower a person’s IQ… for life.
A recently published study out of New Zealand has been following 1,037 for the past 25 years. The subjects of the study were issued IQ tests at age 13 and again at age 38. Throughout the study, participants were surveyed about their drug use.
The conclusion: Teens who smoked marijuana four times a week experienced a drop of an average eight IQ points with the deficit remaining well after the drug use stopped.
Susan Tapert, a neuropsychologist at the University of California San Diego, shared her thoughts: “A lot of the areas that are still developing during adolescent years happen to be the areas with high cannabis receptor density.”
She believes that a teenager’s brain is more vulnerable to the effects of marijuana on the brain. The critical regions for learning, memory, and planning are shaped most during adolescence.
Another explanation could be that teens who smoke pot could be more likely to slack off at school, not participate, or just not attend classes. This lack of stimulation could be the reason IQ points slip away.
But while the causation is still being debated, there’s one thing that can’t be denied: there is certain association between smoking pot and a lower IQ.