Studies Say Sexual Minorities Smoke the Most Medical Marijuana

A new study indicates that "sexual minorities" consume cannabis more than their heterosexual others. But the reason why is still unclear.

Cannabis and homosexuals

A study published in the journal Drug and Alcohol Dependence found differences in cannabis consumption rates among the LGBT+ community and homosexuals when put up against heterosexual patients. The LGB patients reported that they consumed more weed than heterosexual patients — and by quite the margin.

The study utilised data from the 2015-2017 National Survey on Drug Use conducted by an American association – the National Institutes of Health. Those conducting the study analysed responses from 126,463 American adults with legal medical cannabis permission.

The Facts of the Matter

Among women, the study revealed that lesbians and bisexuals reported more frequent consumption than heterosexual women. While 10% of heterosexual women stated that they consumed medical purpose cannabis in the past year, 26% of lesbian women answered the same, while bisexual women surpassed the other two groups with a massive 40%.

The same pattern was observed in daily use statistics. Only 1.5% of heterosexual women stated that they consumed medical marijuana on a daily basis. In opposition to this, 6% of lesbians and 10% of bisexual women stated that they medicate daily.

Dr. Silvia Martins, a professor and author in the field stated that: “We further extended these findings to estimate daily/near-daily [marijuana use] prevalence, which was seven times higher among bisexual women than heterosexual women and 2.3 times as high for bisexual men compared to heterosexual men,” according to Science Daily.

When it comes to their male counterparts, use of cannabis in the last year was reported by 17% of heterosexual men, 29% of gay men, and 30% of bisexual men. Meanwhile, 9% of bisexuals, 7% of gay men, and 4% of heterosexuals said that they consumed daily.

What’s the Reason for Homosexuals Consuming More?

Now the question turns to why LGB and homosexual patients are consuming more cannabis than their heterosexual counterparts? The research didn’t provide any conclusive answers to this, but it is believed that the reasoning is related to the stress that is associated with the stigma of being gay.

Results did back previous statements that bisexual women consume cannabis more so than heterosexual women. Bisexual women are also twice as likely to have co-occurring disorders.

Bisexual, gay, lesbian, pansexual, and transgender Americans are faced with more harassment and hate that heterosexuals. LGBT+ youth experience higher rates of bullying at school, as well as homelessness, than heterosexual peers. These traumatic events can have a long-lasting impact as they follow them into adulthood. Drug dependence, even when it comes to a substance such as cannabis, is often linked back to a trauma experienced during childhood. Suicide rates amongst the LGBT+ community and homosexuals are also three times higher than their heterosexual counterparts.

Hate crimes against the LGBT+ and homosexual communities have been on a steady incline since 2014.

It is a fact that LGBT+ groups do have to deal with more harassment, hate and violence than heterosexuals, is this the only reason these groups are sparking it up? There is still much to be uncovered, there could be numerous other factors contributing to this phenomenon.

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