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Daily marijuana use has surpassed daily cigarette use for the first time among college students, a new study shows.

Surveys conducted as part of the University of Michigan’s Monitoring the Future study revealed that marijuana use among college students is on the rise, with daily or near-daily use being reported by 5.9 percent of students in 2014. That’s the highest rate since 1980, the study authors report. The researchers report that one in every 17 college students is smoking marijuana daily or nearly every day.

“It’s clear that for the past seven or eight years there has been an increase in marijuana use among the nation’s college students,” said study author Lloyd Johnston, a researcher at University of Michigan in a statement. “And this largely parallels an increase we have been seeing among high school seniors.”

Why? The researchers say that the increase could be due to the fact that using marijuana is viewed as less dangerous to young people. Fifty-five percent of young people ages 19 to 22 thought marijuana was dangerous in 2006, but only 35% thought so in 2014.


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