Marihuana

Marihuana

Is usually smoked as a cigarette, joint, pipe or bong. People who use marihuana may feel anxious, euphoric (or "high"), and/or fearful while others may feel relaxed and talkative. Some people enjoy the way marihuana alters their perceptions while others don't. Many people do not experience psychoactive effects when they first start using marihuana but these effects begin to appear with repeated use.

 

Short-term effects

Marihuana use can produce many side effects including:

  • red eyes, dry mouth and throat, drowsiness
  • irritation of the respiratory passages (with smoking)
  • increased heart rate and decrease in blood pressure (may lead to fainting)
  • increased hunger (often called "munchies")
  • mild paranoia, anxiety, panic or psychosis
  • impaired reaction time, coordination, and motor skills
  • difficulty in thinking and problem-solving
  • impaired short-term memory and ability to learn

Also, a person could potentially experience:

  • visual or other perceptual distortions (seeing colours or patterns that are not real)
  • hallucinations (seeing things that do not exist)
  • severe agitation
  • disorientation
    • Someone who smokes marihuana regularly may have many of the same respiratory problems that tobacco smokers have like daily cough and phlegm, symptoms of chronic bronchitis, and more frequent chest colds.
    • .      Marihuana users inhale deeply and hold the smoke in the lungs which may be the reason why the amount of tar inhaled by them and the level of carbon monoxide absorbed are three to five times greater than among tobacco smokers.
    • There have been reports that young children who were exposed to marihuana in the womb experience some learning problems.
    • A study of college students shows that key skills related to attention, memory, and learning are reduced in people who use a lot of marihuana, even after they have not used in 24 hours.
      • THC changes how information relating to the senses (sight, hearing, smell, taste, and touch) gets into and is acted on by the part of the brain that is important for learning, memory, and the combination of those sensory experiences with a person's emotions and motivations. It has also been found that learned behaviors, which depend on that part of the brain, deteriorate with use.
      • Marihuana use has been linked to a higher risk of short-term psychosis (loss of touch with reality, delusions, and hallucinations) or schizophrenia (long-term psychotic disorder), especially among people who may have a genetic predisposition or a family history of psychiatric disorders.
      • Marihuana use can also increase the symptoms of existing schizophrenia and make it more difficult to treat.
        • People who use marihuana will be less motivated and will achieve less.
        • They will be more rebellious and aggressive and be more acceptant of this kind of behavior

Long-term Health Risks

  • Breathing problems 
  • Learning problems 
  • Psychosis and Schizophrenia 
  • Effects on overall behaviour 

What's the Big Deal it's just Marihuana?

... not anymore, the world has changed, and so have the drugs.

  • Kids are using marihuana at an earlier age
  • Marihuana is stronger than it has ever been before and the effects can last up to 24 hours
  • More teens are being treated for marihuana addiction than all other illegal drugs combined
  • Marihuana affects alertness, concentration, perception, coordination and reaction time
  • Marihuana makes it difficult to judge distances and react to signals and sounds on the road when driving
  • Smoking marihuana leads to changes in the brain that are similar to those caused by cocaine, heroin, or alcohol.