Does Smoking Pot Make You Dumber?

If you've been a sometimes-recreational pot smoker since college, there's good news: Your IQ hasn't been eroding with each toke.

30 Jul 1977, USA --- A roadie for the country-rock band The Sleepy Creek Skunk Band takes a bong hit with friends. --- Image by © Roger Ressmeyer/CORBIS

Photo: Corbis

If you've been a recreational pot smoker since college, there's good news: Your IQ hasn't been eroding with each toke.

A newly-released 25-year study in the Proceedings Of The National Academy Of Sciences tracked the IQ levels of about 1,000 New Zealanders from age 13 to age 38 and found that those who began blazing after they turned 18 essentially lost no IQ points over the years—the same as non-drug users.

But, the study reveals, those burners who took frequent bong hits between 13 and 18 years of age—an essential period in the brain's development—showed an average IQ slip of at least 8 points, a significant dip.

While smoking and/or vaporizing pot can cause a whole host of health problems, sabotage your search for your phone, and create a sudden, insatiable appetite for cheddar cheese Combos, after the high wears off, you won't, apparently, be any dumber.

Puff-puff-pass, gentlemen.

— Dawson is a magazine writer and editor, and a regular contributor to Details.

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