Counselling adolescents and parents about cannabis: A primer for health professionals Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • Abstract While cannabis use among adolescents is frequent in Canada, youth do recognize the potential harms, and increasingly expect knowledgeable health care providers to discuss substance use in everyday practice. This practice point provides sound, evidence-based tools to help health professionals address nonmedical (recreational) cannabis use and its related risks. After highlighting how to make the clinical setting a safe space for youth to talk about psychoactive substances, specific strategies for approaching cannabis use in effective, developmentally appropriate ways are described. Consistent with current literature, screening questionnaires to help structure discussion and identify adolescents who may benefit from more specialized interventions are recommended. Because one in six adolescents who experiments with cannabis goes on to misuse it, appraising their willingness to change risky behaviours is a key aspect of care, along with supportive goal-setting and helping families. Recommended resources for practitioners and parents are included.

publication date

  • June 15, 2020