Teen marijuana use concerning among addiction officials

This Saturday is "4-20" – a day when those who use marijuana celebrate their freedom to use.

But there is still concern over the lack of education out there when it comes to cannabis and adolescent use. 

On Tuesday, FOX 9’s Karen Scullin spoke with a Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation counselor to discuss the growing concern.

"We’ve seen an increase of individuals using cannabis. As young as 13 years old we’ve seen patients come in with cannabis use disorder," said Liz Walker.

Cannabis use disorder is when daily life is impacted negatively, or in the more serious cases they’re now seeing — psychosis or CHS, also known as Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome, can develop.

"We’re seeing a lot more aggression specifically associated with the cannabis users’ tiredness. I hear a lot of procrastination patients that are unable to get tasks done," Walker said.

The concern among addiction experts is that legalizing marijuana has led to kids thinking the drug is no big deal. 

"What I’m primarily seeing is individuals that view abstinence as OK I’m gonna be abstinent from all substances, but I’m going to continue to use cannabis. They’re calling it ‘California sober,’" Walker said.

But California sober isn’t really sober, especially when today’s marijuana is far more potent. 

And some kids see it as medicinal, and with the mental health crisis among teens, cannabis is often seen as a solution. Social media also playing a big part in the push among teens.

"A large trigger for them to use substances is seeing it experiencing the fear of missing out [FOMO]. And then wanting to use themselves," Walker said.