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Reductions in cannabis use are associated with improvements in anxiety, depression, and sleep quality, but not quality of life.



This study examined the longitudinal association between reductions in cannabis use and changes in anxiety, depression, sleep quality, and quality of life.


Secondary analyses were conducted based on data from a cannabis use disorder medication trial in 302 adults (ages 18-50). Changes in symptoms of anxiety and depression, sleep quality, and quality of life were assessed in relation to changes in cannabis use during the 12-week trial of treatment.


Based on the slope of individual cannabis use trajectory, the sample was classified into two groups (Cannabis Use Reduction, n=152 vs. Cannabis Use Increase, n=150) which was included as a binary covariate in subsequent modeling. Controlling for demographics (age, gender, race/ethnicity), treatment condition, and time-varying tobacco and alcohol use, separate latent growth curve models showed a significant association between the Cannabis Use Reduction group and improvement (i.e., lower values in slope) in anxiety (β=-0.09, SE=0.04; p<0.05), depression (β=-0.11, SE=0.04; p<0.01), and sleep quality (β=-0.07, SE=0.03; p<0.05) over the observation period, but not in quality of life.


These results indicate a longitudinal relationship between reductions in cannabis use and improvements in anxiety, depression, and sleep quality. Clinicians treating patients with co-occurring cannabis use and problems with anxiety, depression, or sleep quality should attend to cannabis use reduction as a component of treatment.

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