The federal government is spending hundreds of thousands of dollars to buy PDAs for youths in the hopes it will help them stop using marijuana.
The newest $242,381 grant will provide PDAs to young people so they can receive encouraging messages throughout the day and journal what triggers their desire to smoke weed. The government has spent $772,472 total on this project since 2013, according to the site.
Participants ages 15-24 who use marijuana at least three times a week would be required to use the PDAs to summarize how much they used each day and what triggers their desire to use. They would also be able to receive messages encouraging them toward marijuana abstinence.
“Emotional states and social contexts are associated with desire to use marijuana, suggesting that interventions may be more effective if administered in real life, as triggers for use are being experienced,” the report’s abstract states.
The report says the growth of marijuana use disorders demands “novel” approaches to research.
“Effective interventions are desperately needed for youth with marijuana use disorders, who are at peak risk for adverse consequences, but have been underrepresented in treatment research,” the report states. “The proposed intervention, efficient yet reinforced in real time and in real life contexts, has the potential for tremendous impact on the large population of youth seen in primary care who frequently use marijuana.”
The government has funded a variety of research projects to combat youth marijuana use, spending hundreds of thousands on the cause, including $357,750 for a smartphone application to encourage exercise instead of marijuana use.
The report goes on to say the idea is so good, it could be used again in the future.
“Further, the novel, mobile device- based approach to intervention can be adapted to research across a variety of fields related to human behavior,” the abstract states.
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