Ecological Momentary Intervention for Marijuana Use in Youth


The team used motivational counseling with adolescents using marijuana. They found it effective but wondered if they could make it more effective by adding an ecological momentary intervention component.

They used the mEMA System to provide personalized messages to participants throughout the day that were tailored to the specific momentary context (e.g. hanging out with friends). The messages were personalized based on counselors’ in-person interactions with each participant then added into the app by the clinical team each week. They found that participants in both the motivational counseling condition and the motivational counseling condition assisted by ecological momentary intervention showed a reduced desire for and use of marijuana at the end of the study. And that desire to use marijuana during targeted contexts was reduced even more in the EMI assisted condition. Their patients enjoyed using the app and reading the messages.

About the Researcher

Lydia Shrier, MD, MPH

Attending physician at Boston Children’s Hospital
Research Profile
mHealth (Full Text)