For all those who think they know. Try this on for size and see if you still think it's okay. FIVE COMMON MYTHS AND FACTS ABOUT MARIJUANA
01. MYTH: Marijuana is harmless.
01. FACT: Can lead to a host of significant health, social, learning, and behavioral problems at a crucial time in a young person's development. Getting high also impairs judgment, which can lead to risky decision making on issues like sex, criminal activity, or riding with someone who is under the influence of drugs or alcohol. According to the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA) at Columbia University, teen users are 5 times more likely to have sex than teens who do not.
02. MYTH: You can't get addicted to marijuana.
02. FACT: Research shows that marijuana use can lead to psychological addiction. Each year, more kids enter treatment with a primary diagnosis of marijuana dependence than for all other illicit drugs combined.
03. MYTH: There are no long-term consequences to marijuana use.
03. FACT: Research shows that kids who smoke marijuana engage in risky behavior that can jeopardize their futures, like having sex, getting in trouble with the law, or losing scholarship money. Marijuana can also hurt academic achievement and puts kids at risk for depression and anxiety.
04. MYTH: Marijuana isn't as popular as other drugs like ecstasy among teens today.
04. FACT: Kids use marijuana far more than any other illicit drug. Among kids who use drugs, 60 percent use only marijuana.
05. MYTH: Young kids won't be exposed to marijuana.
05. FACT: Between 1991 and 2001, the number of 8th graders who used marijuana doubled from one in 10 to one in five.
HEALTH HAZARDS OF MARIJUANA USEThe main active chemical in marijuana is THC (delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol). Short-term effects of marijuana use include problems with memory and learning; distorted perception; difficulty in thinking and problem-solving; loss of coordination; and increased heart rate, anxiety, and panic attacks.
Effects of Marijuana on the Brain. TLC changes the way sensory information gets into and is acted on by the hippo campus, a component of the brain that is crucial for learning, memory, and the integration of sensory experiences with emotions and motivations. Researchers have discovered that learned behaviors, which depend on the hippo campus, also deteriorate.
Effects on the Lungs. Regular use may lead to respiratory problems that tobacco smokers have. These individuals may have daily cough and phlegm, symptoms of chronic bronchitis, and more frequent chest colds. Regardless of the THC content, the amount of tar inhaled by marijuana smokers and the level of carbon monoxide absorbed are three to five times greater than among tobacco smokers. This may be due to marijuana users inhaling more deeply and holding the smoke in the lungs.
Effects of Heavy Heavy Use on LearLearning Social Behavior. A study of college students has shown that critical skills related to attention, memory, and learning are impaired among people who use marijuana heavily, even after discontinuing its use for at least 24 hours. Researchers compared 65 "heavy users," who had smoked marijuana a median of 29 of the past 30 days, and 64 "light users," who had smoked a median of 1 of the past 30 days. Marijuana users made more errors and had more difficulty sustaining attention, shifting attention to meet the demands of changes in the environment, and in registering, processing, and using information.
Longitudinal research on marijuana use among young people below college age indicates those who used have lower achievement than the non-users, more acceptance of deviant behavior, more delinquent behavior and aggression, greater rebelliousness, poorer relationships with parents, and more associations with delinquent and drug-using friends.
Sources: Journal of the American Medical Association, Prevalence of Marijuana Use Disorders in the United States. May 5, 2004. Wilson M. Compton, MD, MPE, James D. Colliver, PhD and Meyer D. Glantz, PhD (National Institute on Drug Abuse NIDA); and Bridget F. Grant, PhD and Frederick S. Stinson, PhD (National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism - NIAAA). Additional source: National Institutes on Health (NIH) research data archives.
AgeVenture News Service, www.demko.com
As a former idgit, who thought that my poor behavior had no impact on others, but knew that certain things were wrong and did them anyway, I say let's stop the madness. It's time to grow up all you who think it's okay, and get a real life. I don't often go on rants here, but this issue has hit close to home now and my heart is breaking.
It's interesting to me that the same people who won't eat meat because it's wrong to hurt animals, have no problem drinking alcohol, smoking cigarettes and pot, and drinking coffee as well as other high in caffeine drinks. But then these are the same sort of people who castigate someone for wearing fur, but have no problem having an abortion. They tell me I should drive a hybrid vehicle to save the earth and conserve energy, but will pass me on the freeway going 90 miles an hour while we are driving 60 to 65 to conserve gas and money. They also tell me to go green, but buy adult beverages in glass and paper containers that need to be recycled using what? Fossil fuels. Hmmmmmmm.