Tired of punishments that didn't seem to have any effect on her son, a South Carolina mom decided to publicly humiliate him after she caught him smoking pot with his friends. April Mathison made her 13-year-old son, Brandon, wear a sign that said: "Smoked Pot, got caught. Don't I look cool? Not!" while he walked up and down an intersection in their hometown.

I don't necessarily agree with Mathison's tactic, but with a new study linking teen pot smoking with lower IQs, I'm thinking parents will have to do whatever they can to make sure they're stay away from marijuana.

Read more in ¿Qué más?: Teens: Mean now, free of alcohol & drugs later

The study, which followed more than 1,000 children for 25 years, was conducted in New Zealand, and essentially shows that the IQ of those who started smoking pot as teens and did so at least four times a week dropped an average of eight points--the equivalent of going from being an A student to a B one. Unfortunately, the deficit persisted even after the person quit smoking pot.  

The drop in IQ, however, was not present in those who started smoking pot as adults, suggesting that marijuana has a different effect on the still developing brain of a teenager. Considering that, according to recent estimates, one in 10 high schoolers smoke pot at least 20 times per month, the findings of this particular study could affect millions of teenagers. 

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The main problem will be making them understand how dangerous and detrimental smoking can actually be for them because, of all the drugs out there, pot is usually seen as the most benign by teens. With information like the one released through this new study, it looks like more parents might have to turn to extreme tactics--like April Mathison--to make sure their teens don't smoke pot. 

What do you think of this study? How far would you go to ensure your teens don't smoke pot. Share your thoughts with us by leaving us a comment below. 

Image via miss.libertine/flickr

About the author

Roxana A. Soto is Features Editor of MamásLatinas. She's a bilingual and bicultural journalist born in Peru and raised in Mexico, Argentina, South Africa and Miami. She's also mom to a girl in 3rd grade and a boy in Kinder. She loves books, languages, traveling and good food – especially when cooked by someone else.

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