Should Marijuana Be Legalized: A Scoping Review of Associations of Marijuana and Depression

Cureus. 2023 Aug 2;15(8):e42835. doi: 10.7759/cureus.42835. eCollection 2023 Aug.


People with addiction to marijuana and those who have ever consumed marijuana at any time during their life suffer from depression at some point in their life. Depression has been associated with substance use as both a trigger and repercussion. A total of 3663 articles were analyzed, and 26 articles were collectively selected for this study. Consuming marijuana was linked to the development of depression in the majority of individuals. Marijuana consumption and its repercussions have both been connected to negative effects on the body, such as respiratory disorders and even psychological disorders, including stress and depressive disorders. Studies potentially point to a complicated causal relationship between marijuana consumption and depressive disorder, stating that early depressive symptoms enable marijuana usage, which then reduces depression. A research article clearly states that consuming marijuana can be helpful in elevating mood and anxiolytic initially, but it is subsequently followed by a rise in depressive symptoms, which manifest as mental distress and frustration. Discussions with patients about the extent of their marijuana consumption, techniques for reducing the use, and the impact of marijuana on depression may be beneficial in medical facilities where depressive disorder is treated. This research paper highlights the importance of understanding depression and the use of marijuana for temporary relief from depressive symptoms and its long-term consequences on mental health.

Keywords: depression; ethic; marijuana use; therapeutic use; substance abuse.

Publication types

  • Review