New Study Addresses Blunt Use Among Young Blacks

The University of Cincinnati College of Medicine has been given three-quarters of a million dollars to research blunt use among African Americans between the ages of 18-25.  According to the study from the National Survey of Drug Use and Health, 50 percent of blunt smokers are between the ages of 18 to 25, thus the targeting of the study.

Blunts gained popularity among weed smokers during the early ’80s, but became an integral part of Hip-Hop culture via the tobacco product often being mentioned as a preferred method of smoking marijuana by many popular rap artists.

According to Dr. LaTrice Montgomery, PhD of the University of Cincinnati, an assistant professor and licensed psychologist, Twitter will be the preferred method to disseminate their message.

She is using Twitter as a way to engage with young African Americans who are reluctant to enter or remain engaged in traditional substance abuse treatment.

Given that social media is already fully integrated into the lives of many young adults, my research will focus on the development and evaluation of a private online Twitter group to support African-American young adults who are interested in reducing heavy blunt use, Dr. Montgomery said. It is important to develop innovative and cost-effective interventions for young adults.

A blunt is an alternative to smoking weed with rolling papers. They first gained popularity with weed smokers because they provide a slower burn than rolling papers do.  

She says the reason the study is focused on young African American blunt use is research consistently indicates higher rates of blunt use among African-American young adults.

Though the study does appear promising, their has been no mention of addressing root causes, at-risk groups, prevention and treatment.  Dr. Montgomery is looking to address that as well by looking into the marketing tactics cigar and cigarillo companies, as well as perceptions of blunt use in popular cultural and artistic channels.

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