New research from the University of Cambridge debunks the popular media portrayal of the unmotivated and apathetic marijuana consumer.
As reported in The Guardian, the study was published in the August 24th issue of the International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology.
Researchers studied 274 teens and adults who professed to using marijuana at least weekly and up to four days per week for the three months leading up to the study. By contrast, researchers also studied a control group of individuals who were not consumers of cannabis.
Study participants from both groups completed questionnaires designed to measure both apathy and adhedonia, or the inability to feel pleasure. Researchers found that the regular cannabis users scored slightly lower on adhedonia. With regards to motivation, or apathy, researchers found no difference in scores for those who used cannabis regularly as compared with those who did not.
Researchers concluded that regular cannabis users experience just as much or more pleasure and are just as motivated as non-users.
The authors of the study emphasize that all participants were sober while completing the questionnaires. Future phases of the project will aim to measure whether a decline in motivation is observed while users are under the influence of cannabis.