Cannabis and Mental Health: 2017 Report of the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine

Author: Flavio Guzman, MD
Last updated: February 1, 2017 at 16:33 pm

The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine published a report on the health effects of cannabis and cannabinoids.

Here we reproduce the key points of the mental health chapter. You can access the full publication here.

Psychosis and schizophrenia

  • Cannabis use is likely to increase the risk of developing schizophrenia and other psychoses; the higher the use the greater the risk.
  • In individuals with schizophrenia and other psychoses, a history of cannabis use may be linked to better performance on learning and memory tasks.

Bipolar disorder

  • For individuals diagnosed with bipolar disorders, near daily cannabis use may be linked to greater symptoms of bipolar disorder than non-users.

Other conclusions

  • Cannabis use does not appear to increase the likelihood of developing depression, anxiety, and posttraumatic stress disorder.
  • Heavy cannabis users are more likely to report thoughts of suicide than non-users.
  • Regular cannabis use is likely to increase the risk for developing social anxiety disorder.


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