Weed is on the receiving end of a PR campaign that has painted it for decades as a gate drug, a drug that causes schizophrenia and promotes laziness, a plant that leads to a life of crime. Like marijuana legalized in more and more states, very few people buy more these arguments. And as more and more parents use marijuana responsibly, has changed the demand for more specific – and less over – health benefits and disadvantages of weeds. Does smoking grass cause cancer? What are the risks and benefits of marijuana? All in all, are weeds bad for you? Not quite. But it is also by no means a harmless substance.
Medical marijuana is used to treat a wide range of conditions, from PTSD to chronic pain to multiple sclerosis. It can help you fall asleep and stay asleep. But for most people, the biggest and most obvious benefit of marijuana, such as a beer in the evening, is a good old-fashioned dissociation. Stress relief is crucial for parents, and marijuana is safer than very other recreational drugs, including alcohol.
But weeds are not harmless. When smoked, it can cause lung problems. Taken in any form, it can lead to pregnancy problems, impaired learning and memory, schizophrenia and psychosis, and more. Here’s what users and the curious need to know before diving.
The benefits of weeds
The biggest advantage of recreational weeds is the high it gives. Compared to alcohol and other drugs, “it’s a much safer way to go home and relax without causing harm,” says Sarah Mann, a physician at the Mindful Medicine Clinic. “I have been a critical care physician for most of my time. And I see alcohol overdose every single day, in every form. I have never had an overdose of cannabis. ” Of course, taking in too many weeds can make you uncomfortable with stones. But there are no recorded cases of fatal marijuana overdose.
Cannabis can also improve certain aspects of physical and mental health. “It’s especially good for neurological conditions, including pain conditions,” Mann says. Adults who use cannabis to treat chronic pain are less likely to experience symptoms of their condition, according to a comprehensive report of the National Academics of Science, Engineering and Medicine. “Sometimes it can even be a definitive treatment,” Mann says.
Some people smoke weeds for good sleep, which is probably effective – at least first. There is “Moderate evidence” that weeds improve “short-term sleep outcomes in individuals with sleep disorder associated with obstructive sleep apnea syndrome, fibromyalgia, chronic pain, and multiple sclerosis,” according to the National Academic report. But regular use of medical marijuana has been linked to difficulty falling asleep and staying asleep, according to a study of 128 people using the drug for chronic pain. The researchers suggest that over time, users may develop a tolerance for pot’s sleep-enhancing benefits. And a recent large study found that people who smoked weeds in the past 30 days were more likely to get too much or too little sleep.
Another benefit of marijuana is its ability to help manage certain mental illnesses – especially PTSD. It can also relieve depression, although more research on the subject is needed to be sure, according to a review of studies on medical marijuana and mental health. The National Academics have found that marijuana can also help adults social anxiety. Bregular use may increase the risk of developing the disease.
For people who struggle with alcohol or opioid addiction, exchanging those drugs for marijuana can help overcome their drug use disorder, according to the Mental Health Review. However, this technique is controversial, especially since the use of weeds increases a person’s risk of developing substance abuse of another drug.
How are weeds bad for you?
Smoking weeds is the biggest risk to your lungs. Most research on smoking has been done on cigarettes, so researchers do not know exactly how marijuana smoking affects the lungs. The American Lung Association is confident that smoke pot will damage them. It damages the cells of the large airways and causes chronic bronchitis. It can also lead to chronic cough and mucus production, according to the National Academic Report.
A new study about the clear effects of smoking pot found that long-term use leads to over-inflation of the lungs and increased resistance to airflow, more so than smoking tobacco. As with tobacco, the smoking of weeds also makes it more difficult to extract oxygen from a breath.
It is possible that smoking weeds may increase the risk of developing lung cancer, but there is not enough evidence to be sure, according to a 2014 review. There is modest evidence to link only one type of cancer to marijuana: a specific subtype of testicular cancer, according to the National Academics.
Weeds pose a threat not only to the body but also to the mind. Several studies suggest that pot can damage memory, learning and attention. These effects persist even after you stop. There is also some truth in the schizophrenia fear of past days. Although the use of marijuana can not cause schizophrenia, it does double the risk of developing schizophrenia in people who are vulnerable to the condition, according to a 2018 review.
Smoking can also add unnecessary health risks to parents’ future children – and can completely prevent them from having children. Cannabis can cause sperm problems leading to infertility. With the help of marijuana during pregnancy can lead to lower birth weight, premature birth and a higher risk of autism.
Some people who pot smoke develop a condition called cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome, or CHS for short. Only those who use marijuana regularly (daily or weekly) develop it. CHS is categorized according to symptoms of nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain that come and go in cycles, according to a 2011 review. It is likely more common in men. Symptoms usually stop when you store the weeds.
The unknown risks and benefits of marijuana
Because marijuana is illegal at the federal level, it is difficult for researchers to study how it affects health. There are still many unknowns about how it can hurt and help your body. Scientists will not understand the full picture for many years.
“We know that cannabis can be used for many diseases, and to some extent we also know how it works. But the fact that there are so many products on the market also gives the impression that it helps with anything and everything,” Tibor Harkany, Ph.D., a neurobiologist at the Medical University of Vienna’s Center for Brain Research, said in a recent Press release. “But in reality marijuana is not a miracle plant; it has very specific uses and we urgently need a number of scientific, evidence-based clinical trials on this topic. “
Meanwhile, you and your doctor are the only people who can weigh the known risks against the benefits of marijuana.