Alcohol Consumption Moderates the Link Between Cannabis Use and Cannabis Dependence in an Internet Survey

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The link between cannabis use and cannabis dependence remains poorly understood. Some people use cannabis regularly without signs of dependence; others show dependence despite using less. This study examined alcohol consumption as a moderator of this association. A sample of 476 people (primarily Caucasian men) who used cannabis at least once per week reported their alcohol consumption, cannabis use, and cannabis dependence symptoms in an Internet survey. Regressions revealed significant interactions between measures of cannabis use and alcohol consumption when predicting cannabis dependence. Cannabis use covaried with cannabis dependence, particularly in people who consumed alcohol frequently or in large amounts per week. Despite limitations, these data suggest that alcohol may decrease the safety of cannabis consumption.

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