Byxbee’s words of caution should be heeded

FI-Letter-to-the-EditorTo the Editor

I commend the recent commentary in the Greenwich Post from columnist Jenny Byxbee discussing the pervasive usage of marijuana in our youth.

Most youth, and many adults, are not aware of the devastating effects on the developing adolescent brain that are clearly evidenced in the medical literature. The active component, THC, is a dopamine analog. Dopamine functions in the body to control movement, emotional response, and ability to experience pleasure and pain.

Amphetamines and cocaine are other illegal drugs which compete and disrupt the dopamine pathways in the body.

As children use pot, natural levels of dopamine activity decline. They become at risk of self-medicating to cope with any variety of daily stressors, since the development of normal coping mechanisms is stymied.

Marijuana has become quite potent, and the evidence suggests that cannabis is associated with an increased risk of psychosis when it is used frequently. Adults must undertake serious and honest discussion to address these misunderstandings in order to save our children and make this an uncommon activity.


Rosa Fini

The author is a practicing pediatrician in the town of Greenwich.

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