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The Effects of Cannabis Use on Physical and Mental Health

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  • van Ours, Jan C
  • Williams, Jenny

Abstract

This paper investigates whether cannabis use affects physical and mental health. To do so, information on prime aged individuals living in Amsterdam in 1994 is used. Dutch data offer a clear advantage in estimating the health impacts of cannabis use because the legal status of cannabis in the Netherlands ensures that estimates are free from confounding with the physical and psychological effects of engaging in a criminal activity. Accounting for selection into cannabis use and shared frailties in mental and physical health, the results suggest that cannabis use reduces the mental wellbeing of men and women and the physical wellbeing of men. Although statistically significant, the magnitude of the effect of using cannabis on mental and physical health is found to be small.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 8499.

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Date of creation: Aug 2011
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:8499

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Keywords: Cannabis use; Duration models; Mental health; Physical health;

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References

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  1. van Ours, Jan C & Williams, Jenny, 2005. "Cannabis Prices and Dynamics of Cannabis Use," CEPR Discussion Papers 4991, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Jan C. van Ours & Jenny Williams, 2011. "Cannabis use and mental health problems," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 26(7), pages 1137-1156, November.
  3. van Ours, Jan C & Williams, Jenny, 2007. "Why Parents Worry: Initiation into Cannabis Use by Youth and their Educational Attainment," CEPR Discussion Papers 6449, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Jenny Williams & Christopher Skeels, 2006. "The Impact of Cannabis Use on Health," De Economist, Springer, vol. 154(4), pages 517-546, December.
  5. Stephen Pudney, 2010. "Drugs policy: what should we do about cannabis?," Economic Policy, CEPR & CES & MSH, vol. 25, pages 165-211, 01.
  6. Athanasios Orphanides & David Zervos, 1992. "Rational addiction with learning and regret," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 216, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  7. Ours, J.C. van & Williams, J., 2009. "Cannabis Use and Mental Health Problems," Discussion Paper 2009-60, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  8. Mroz, Thomas A., 1999. "Discrete factor approximations in simultaneous equation models: Estimating the impact of a dummy endogenous variable on a continuous outcome," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 92(2), pages 233-274, October.
  9. Heckman, James & Singer, Burton, 1984. "A Method for Minimizing the Impact of Distributional Assumptions in Econometric Models for Duration Data," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(2), pages 271-320, March.
  10. Jan C. van Ours, 2006. "Dynamics in the use of drugs," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 15(12), pages 1283-1294.
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Cited by:
  1. Jan C.van Ours, Jenny Williams, David Fergusson, L. John Horwood, 2012. "Cannabis use and suicidal ideation," Department of Economics - Working Papers Series 1155, The University of Melbourne.

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