Can ‘marijuana goggles’ keep teens from smoking weed?

The Fatal Vision® Marijuana Simulation goggles are a tool meant to simulate cognitive impairments associated with recreational marijuana use. (Photo credit: Fatalvision.com)

(WTNH) — After countless failed attempts, the nation’s substance abuse counselors have a new tool in their fight to keep teens from smoking weed. “Marijuana goggles,” a set of green-tinted goggles, are designed to show users the impairing effects of THC.

The Fatal Vision® Marijuana Simulation Experience, manufactured by Innocorp, Ltd is meant to simulate “the distorted processing of visual information, loss of motor coordination, and slowed decision-making and reaction time resulting from recreational marijuana use.” According to the Washington Post, the goggles are supposed to be used with the other products that come with the kit to test the wearer’s ability to solve a maze, catch a ball, and navigate a grid on the floor, to show teens how being high can impact their ability to do common tasks.

A group of teens in the Hancock County Youth Council in Indiana tried out the goggles for themselves. The students participated in a simple maze, which took them 12 seconds without the goggles, but four times longer with them on. The goggles also take away the ability to see the color red, which makes driving much more dangerous. The students took part in a simulated driving exercise where none of them could see flashing red lights or laser lights that represented a roadblock.

“Anytime you can do an activity — something that’s interactive with them, or something that provides education, that’s great. These actually simulate the loss of some of your cognitive functions,” Tim Retherford, with Neighborhoods Against Substance Abuse told WISH-TV.

But not everyone is praising the goggles. NYU professor Joseph Palamar, who researches teen drug use, told the Washington Post that he doesn’t see how the goggles translate into impairment from using marijuana.

“So the goggles take away the ability to see red, and then the teens are asked to engage in activities that are highly dependent on the color red,” said Palamar. “Misinformation about drug effects has been used as a scare tactic for decades, and this doesn’t seem to be that different.”

Innocorp’s Chief Operating Officer Deb Kusmec told the Washington Post that they worked with drug recognition experts and educators for two years before the goggles were released.

The basic experience kit starts at $975 and each additional pair of goggles costs $200 each.

Educating Teens about Marijuana Impairments, posted by Innocorp Ltd on Vimeo:

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