Marijuana: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

Marijuana or tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) was used as medicine during the ancient times. Emperor Shen Neng of China prescribed the tea version of this controversial plant as a treatment for various health problems including gout, malaria, earache, rheumatism, and even poor memory. This was in 2737 B.C. Yes, that’s how long weed has been present in the society.

But even then, people were warned that abuse of this plant can lead to impotence, blindness and hallucinations. Below, we take a look at marijuana’s effects on the mind and body, both good and bad, so you can see for yourself if it’s something you would ever want to get involved with.

The Good
The “high” or euphoric feeling you get from marijuana, whether you eat or smoke it, can be detected within a few minutes. It can last for about three to four hours. Usually, the experience is described as a calm and peaceful state. For some people, being high on weed means greater enjoyment in even mundane chores like cleaning or washing dishes. Some would even burst out laughing at the smallest of things. Some exhibit physical sensitivity. Some get easily excited and would talk a lot more rapidly than they regularly do. Others become deeper in thought, seeing things in a more profound light.

Weed has also been said to reduce aggression. In movies, the stoned-out is stereotyped as a couch potato who couldn’t move an inch. There is basis for that. It’s also a good thing to note that no one has ever died of overdose. Contrary to the rate of 50,000 people dying every year from alcohol poisoning and 400,000 from tobacco smoking, marijuana has not have casualties so far in terms of overdose.

Moreover, it has been proven to have some benefits on certain types of chronic ailments including glaucoma, cancer, multiple sclerosis, and wasting syndrome. In fact, the Food and Drug Authority has approved synthetic THC as medication for these mentioned illnesses. It has also been used in treating migraines, low appetite, chronic pain, and insomnia.

The Bad
Of course, where there’s a good side, there’s also bad. People who use marijuana have been found to have poor abilities in filtering external distractions. This means, their ability to concentrate on a conversation or task is hampered. Habitual smoking of marijuana also reduces the number of antioxidants in the body. They also have poor eating habits that can lead to nutrient deficiency and poor health.

The Ugly
Now here comes the ugly part. According to the National Institute of Drug Abuse, people who abuse this drug are at high risk of psychiatric disorders. There is also a debate on whether marijuana causes hallucination or not. Some claim they do, others say it’s LSD that does that to you. Another harmful effect of weed is irresponsible behavior, which has been reported about habitual users. People who smoke weed have difficulty making the right decisions.

On top of that is lung cancer. Chemicals in the smoke from marijuana can cause respiratory damage. It can result in asthma, bronchitis, and even lung cancer. Smoking 8 to 15 joints a day poses you at great risk of cancer.

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