Cannabis use by senior citizens is up by 75% from just three years ago, according to a study published this week in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine. The spike in use by older Americans continues a trend that has now lasted for more than a decade.
According to the research, 4.2% of survey respondents age 65 and older reported using marijuana in some form in 2018. That’s up from 2.4% in 2015, a jump of 75%. Cannabis use by senior citizens has been on the rise since 2006 when only 0.5% reported that they used pot.
Dr. Benjamin Han, an assistant professor in the division of geriatric medicine and palliative care at the New York University School of Medicine and one of the study’s authors, said that he’s noticed the increase in marijuana use by seniors in his geriatric practice.
“Ten years ago, no one asked me about cannabis use ever. Now, it’s a very common question when I’m in the clinic,” said Han. “I probably get asked about once a week. There’s a lot of interest.”
To conduct the study, researchers used data collected by the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, an annual representative survey of non-institutionalized