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Marijuana: A brief guide

14 January 2013 No Comment



It is the most popular used illegal drug in USA and made up of dried parts of cannabis sativa hemp plant. The street names are ganja, grass, 420 and pot. The short term effects include euphoria, memory impairment, not being able to think straight and silly ideas.

The ill effects of marijuana

In teenagers, due to marijuana usage, psychotic symptoms are developed. Also, due to use of marijuana in later life, psychotic symptoms can be observed. A new Dutch has divulged this. The relationship is bidirectional one says the doctoral candidate of Leiden University in Netherlands.

Linkage between marijuana and psychosis has been seen before. There was a question whether people were using marijuana to decrease mental illness or to ease their psychotic symptoms, which included delusions and hallucinations.

The study became interesting as both processes were happening at the same time. The researchers were worried about effects of marijuana in teenagers due to the presence of tetra-hydro-cannabinol (THC). The teenager’s brain is growing and can only take so much pot.

For brain development, that is a vulnerable period of time and people, who have a history of schizophrenia or psychosis can be very sensitive to dangerous after effects of THC.

In 2010, at least 3800 Australian teenagers were tested and it was found that they were more prone to developing psychosis as compared to nonsmokers.

It was also found that people, who had delusions and hallucinations were more vulnerable to become pot addicts. It’s a reverse cycle.

For the latest study, the researchers wanted to find, whether pot came first or psychosis. The test subjects were 2120 Dutch teenagers, who were tested when they were teenage boys.

The teenagers were also asked, whether they saw abnormal things which other people didn’t and feelings of loneliness and lack of concentration ability. The researchers found that 940 teens, which makes 44 percent, had a bidirectional link to usage of pot and psychosis.

Understand the bidirectional link

It was seen that children, who were 16 years old had psychosis and started smoking pot, when they were 19. The same case is with using pot for three years straight, which results in psychotic symptoms. The case was same when researchers took mental illness, tobacco and alcohol use in consideration. The researchers were at a loss of words about display of psychosis symptoms later on. The latest research cannot prove the connection between psychosis and marijuana.

At King’s College, London, Dr Marta Di Forti concluded that for some people, marijuana came first and for some psychotic people, marijuana made matters better. The doctor who has studied link between marijuana and psychosis has said that marijuana can be risky for psychosis, but not an exact cause.

There needs to be more awareness of the latest study to the general audience. Marijuana is not a harmless drug. For teenagers, there should be a public health message, which establishes marijuana as a health risk.

The marijuana prevention programs must take this new information into consideration now that psychosis disorders are related to marijuana.

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