Pro's and Con's of Marijuana

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Marijuana : 

Marijuana ...a long-standing argument continues into the 21st Century

-- Pro and Con -- : 

HSS 4933 - Drug Education -- Pro and Con -- There is less interference with work performance due to “hangover” than in persons who use alcohol as a social relaxant different mechanisms for distribution and metabolism Abnormal brain wave readings (EEG) and brain synapse alterations are common with marijuana smokers who use the drug at least 2x per week don’t appear to be permanent unless use is chronic

-- Pro and Con -- : 

HSS 4933 - Drug Education -- Pro and Con -- Most research data seems to support a decrease in consumption of alcohol by marijuana smokers and that there is much less prevalence of addiction cross tolerance heavy users of each correlate highly THC (the active drug substance) accumulates in the brain and reproductive tissues and is not easily broken down abnormal menstrual cycles results in decreases in prolactin, testosterone and sperm production

-- Pro and Con -- : 

HSS 4933 - Drug Education -- Pro and Con -- Few acute physiological changes are attributed to the use of marijuana hormonal influences cardiovascular effects dosage of THC differs with different forms of the drug THC increases heart rate and produces other stress-like effects; contraindicated in those with heart disease tolerance does develop to these effects

-- Pro and Con -- : 

HSS 4933 - Drug Education -- Pro and Con -- Marijuana is useful in reducing the ocular pressure caused by glaucoma and the nausea caused by chemotherapy other forms of marijuana are available (e.g., marinol) other legal drugs can be used Psychological and behavioral effects are common: apathy, lack of concern, amotivation, and disturbance of perception not dangerous forms of mental disturbance

-- Pro and Con -- : 

HSS 4933 - Drug Education -- Pro and Con -- Much of the research into the harmful effects caused by marijuana has, at best, been ambivalent influenced by the decriminalization movement influenced by the renewal of interest in medical uses hard to keep up with newer, more potent varieties (e.g., sinsemilla) Positive correlation exists between marijuana smoking and cigarette smoking; adds to the risk of heart / lung disease cardiovascular effects are typically not permanent

-- Pro and Con -- : 

HSS 4933 - Drug Education -- Pro and Con -- Few, if any, deaths can be attributed directly to marijuana; aspirin in comparison is linked to approximately 1000 deaths per year difficult to measure amounts in blood “intoxication” on marijuana is not identified in most states Short term memory loss is common state dependent learning is the norm with marijuana use

-- Pro and Con -- : 

HSS 4933 - Drug Education -- Pro and Con -- Marijuana is an effective relaxant and intoxicant with few acute side effects low dosage psychedelic effects at high dosage levels polydrug use is common As with any drug used as a coping mechanism, marijuana use for coping may inhibit psychological maturation less effect on older, more mature individuals

-- Pro and Con -- : 

HSS 4933 - Drug Education -- Pro and Con -- Marijuana use is thought to be much less harmful than tobacco and/or alcohol use when used moderately by adults potentiates harm of tobacco smoke presents an ambivalent drug message to young people Chronic marijuana use can result in a “burnout” syndrome

-- Pro and Con -- : 

HSS 4933 - Drug Education -- Pro and Con -- Marijuana use is not addicting for most and doesn’t lead to the use of narcotics more likely to come into contact with other illegal drugs (availability & accessibility) sometimes combined with PCP or heroin, then smoked Complex psychomotor performance (e.g., driving a car) is impaired by the intoxicating qualities of marijuana (reaction time, motor coordination, cue detection, tracking behavior, etc.) less aggressive driving behavior than with alcohol intoxication

-- Pro and Con -- : 

HSS 4933 - Drug Education -- Pro and Con -- Sexuality and sexual experiences are often heightened by the use of marijuana (relaxation; reduced inhibitions) chronic use effects hormones related to cell / tissue development and reproduction animal research A majority of the people who smoke marijuana do so to get “high,” not simply to take advantage of its relaxant qualities becoming the reality for much of drug use (alcohol, cocaine, hallucinogens, etc.) potential for panic reaction

-- Pro and Con -- : 

HSS 4933 - Drug Education -- Pro and Con -- Youthful drug experimenters, if unable to get marijuana, may end up with more dangerous substitutes: LSD, PCP, heroin, cocaine, etc. gateway for some Marijuana use is thought to be major factor in upswing of bronchitis, pharyngitis and pulmonary system cancers due to ciliary paralysis

-- Pro and Con -- : 

HSS 4933 - Drug Education -- Pro and Con -- The illegality of marijuana use and subsequent “Black Market” sales have attracted criminal types to the dispensation of this drug criminal by definition Chemicals in marijuana can cross the placental barrier and are stored in mother’s milk contraindicated with pregnancy

-- Pro and Con -- : 

HSS 4933 - Drug Education -- Pro and Con -- The relative harm from the use of marijuana when compared to the use of other legal drugs does not warrant its prohibition equivocal potential problems related to legalization Evidence exists that THC effects the function and reproduction of T lymphocytes and, therefore, basic immune functioning again, equivocal

Areas of Agreement : 

HSS 4933 - Drug Education Areas of Agreement Marijuana should not be used by: children pregnant women persons with lung / heart diseases persons who are schizophrenic or pre- schizophrenic Infrequent use (i.e., less than once a week) will probably not result in ill effects Marijuana and the use of complex equipment (e.g., a car) do not mix!

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