Marijuana (Pot, Weed, Hemp)

A drug derived from the dried flowers and leaves of the hemp plant. It can be rolled into a joint and smoked, smoked using a pipe or burned and inhaled from a bong. "Blunts" are cigars filled with marijuana and possibly other drugs such as cocaine. It can also be added to cookies, brownies or tea in order to ingest the drug. THC (delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol) is the active ingredient in marijuana absorbed by the body. Marijuana is the 3rd most commonly used drug by teens, listed just after alcohol and tobacco.

Possible Positives

  • A feeling of euphoria, relaxation, and an increased appetite
  • Used by cancer patients to decrease pain and nausea after chemotherapy.

Possible Negatives

  • A lack of motivation due to the drugs affect on the brain
  • Blood shot eyes
  • Dry mouth
  • Paranoia
  • Impaired reflexes
  • Memory loss
  • Difficulty thinking
  • Difficulty problem-solving
  • Loss of coordination
  • Increased heart rate
  • Anxiety
  • Panic attacks
  • A change in the way the brain functions: THC suppresses neurons in the hippocampus, a portion of the brain involved in learning, memory, integrating senses, emotions and motivations.
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Chronic coughing, phlegm and wheezing
  • Chronic bronchitis
  • Respiratory infections
  • Frequent chest colds
  • Lung tissue damage
  • Decreased attention span
  • Difficulty registering, processing and using information
  • Difficulty shifting attention when needed
  • Lower achievement in life
  • Delinquent behavior
  • Aggression
  • Rebelliousness
  • Poor relationships
  • Lung cancer
  • Speeding the aging process of the brain. Marijuana can speed up the degeneration of nerve cells in the brain.
  • Disruption of hormone production
  • Reduced fertility
  • A higher vulnerability to disease. Marijuana destroys white blood cells, reducing the effectiveness of their immune system by up to 40%. The weakened immune system leaves the user vulnerable to many viral and bacterial infections, some of which can be life threatening.
  • Death due to lung cancer, respiratory infection or infection due to a weakened immune system.

Pot Brownies here! Get your intestinal parasites from animal fecies here! People who ingest marijuana are more likely to develop salmonellosis, an intestinal disease caused by ingestion of hemp contaminated with untreated animal manure. How pleasant is that!

Smoking marijuana is no less damaging than smoking cigarettes...

  • Smoking marijuana subjects you to 3 to 5 times more carbon monoxide than cigarettes
  • Smoking 3 to 4 joints causes as much lung damage as smoking a pack of cigarettes.
  • Joints have no filter, so smoking a joint allows 4 times more tar to coat your lungs, than smoking a cigarette.
  • Smoke from a joint is usually inhaled more deeply and held in the lungs longer, allowing more time for the drug to damage your lungs with every puff.

Marijuana is not processed out of the body as efficiently as other drugs. It's active ingredient (THC) lingers in the body for 4 to 5 days, accumulating in the reproductive organs and in the brain. So for almost a week after using marijuana, you may experience...

  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Impaired reflexes
  • Impaired depth perception
  • Impaired sense of time
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Changes in personality
  • An impaired ability to drive safely

Hanging out with friends who smoke marijuana...

  • Can cause you to fail your athletic drug test due to absorbed second hand smoke!
  • Will increase your own risk of developing a marijuana habit.

Related Info

Center for Substance Abuse Treatment and National Hotline
Treatment & referrals
www.samhsa.gov/csat/csat.htm
1-800-662-4357

National Clearinghouse for Alcohol and Drug Information
www.health.org
1-800-729-6686

Narcotics Anonymous World Service Office in Los Angeles
An international, community-based association, holding weekly meetings for recovering drug addicts.
(818) 773-9999 To locate your local chapter
www.na.org/links-toc.htm

Alcoholics Anonymous
Group support for your addiction to alcohol
www.alcoholics-anonymous.org

Alcoholics Anonymous Family Group Headquarters
Group support for those with family members who suffer from alcoholism
www.al-anon-alateen.org

American Cancer Society Information on quitting smoking
www.cancer.org
1-800-227-2345

Smoking, Tobacco and Health Information Line
1-800-232-1311

Tips 4 Teens - Stop Smoking Help
www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/osh/tipsteen.htm