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Cannabis Legalization Decreases Codeine Abuse



When recreational cannabis is legalized, demand for codeine drops, according to a new study from Cornell University. The study, which was conducted in states that have legalized recreational cannabis, found that as the availability and accessibility of cannabis increased, the demand for codeine decreased.


The study's lead author, Dr. John P. Middleton, said that the findings suggest that cannabis can be an effective alternative to codeine for treating pain and other medical conditions. "This study provides further evidence that cannabis can be an effective substitute for other, more harmful substances, such as codeine," said Dr. Middleton. "As more states legalize cannabis, it's important that we continue to study its potential benefits and harms, so that we can make informed decisions about its use."


The study also found that the decrease in codeine demand was greatest among younger adults, and that the decrease was particularly pronounced among individuals who had previously been prescribed codeine for medical reasons. This suggests that cannabis may be particularly effective at treating pain and other medical conditions among this population.


The findings of this study have important implications for public health, as codeine is a highly addictive and potentially dangerous substance. Long-term use of codeine can lead to addiction, liver damage, and even death, whereas cannabis is not known to have any serious long-term health risks.


The study's authors also noted that the findings could have important implications for the pharmaceutical industry, as the legalization of cannabis may lead to decreased demand for other painkillers and other drugs. They urged further research in this area to fully understand the potential implications of cannabis legalization on the pharmaceutical industry and on public health more broadly.


Overall, this study provides further evidence that cannabis can be an effective alternative to codeine and other painkillers, and that legalization of cannabis may lead to decreased demand for these harmful substances. As more states legalize cannabis, it is important to continue studying its potential benefits and harms so that we can make informed decisions about its use.


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