6 Responses to Colorado Summary on Marijuana Health Effects

High Times recently published some of the findings concerning Colorado’s summary on marijuana health effects.

I’d like to address those six points below and point out some things we all should keep in mind.

1. Exposure During Pregnancy, with Children and Adolescents

Well like it’s stated, there’s lot of association, but no causality. Drinking milk is associated with all of these things as well. There’s no firm evidence to support that any of the things mentioned here are due to marijuana consumption.

I’m not saying marijuana consumption in teens is not a bad thing, and I’d recommend the developing brain take as few drugs as possible, pharmaceuticals included, however I’m going to need some real evidence before I can accept that marijuana has this huge negative impact on children.

I have personally found that many people who have smoked since they were very young, aren’t very successful in life according to general standards, however I often wonder if cannabis was just an escape from something else which had a major detrimental impact on their life.

2. Dose Response

Impairment varies among consumers, and the same dose will have different effects on different consumers.

It’s a good rule of thumb to not drive after consuming cannabis, especially for those who are still new to it, or don’t consume it very often. There are some people who actually become better drivers when they consume cannabis though.

And contrary to what some people may say, consuming too much will make you sick, just not in the same way alcohol does since alcohol is a toxin and cannabis is non-toxic. Many get paranoid once they’ve had entirely too much and that leads to uneasiness, which in turn leads to nausea. Your body’s natural response when you feel too far out of it is to expel the contents of your stomach in order to try and get rid of anything which may be causing the effects.

3. Neurological, Cognitive and Mental Health

7 days is absurd, a few hours though you can definitely have impairments, even with the most regular of consumers. The psychotic stuff though has been trotted out many times, but it is completely unsubstantiated.

As for the depression bit, it is far more likely that those who experience depression are consuming cannabis to help with depression, which it does help, rather than they’re getting depressed because of their consumption.

4. Respiratory Effects

Smoking anything is bad for you, no doubt. With combustion, you’re bound to get a few of the same carcinogens from marijuana as tobacco, however it is very much not the same as smoking tobacco. Also studies have shown that something within marijuana counteracts the carcinogens. Lungs of marijuana smokers still tend to be pretty healthy though.

There’s no doubt that a little damage is being done though, but what is that damage when compared to eating really bad food or breathing in the air in a polluted area?

So it’s a good thing that there is vaporizing, edibles, tinctures, and topical creams. Those methods of delivery do not cause any damage.

5. Effects Beyond the Lungs

Just not enough information. We don’t know for certain if it negatively affects the heart or sperm count. However now that we’ve seen some legalization, more advanced studies can be performed though.

6. Cannabis Use and Injury

Major thing you have to consider here is whether or not the THC was active in a person’s system during the time of the wreck. THC stays in the body long after the effects wear off, and there still isn’t a reliable method of detecting just how impaired someone is on THC.

Naturally when marijuana is legalized, consumption is going to go up, and more people are going to have THC in their blood. Thing is though, traffic accidents are down in states where it’s been legalized in some form.

Even if there is a correlation between people have wrecks and being high on marijuana, which I don’t doubt that accidents have been had because someone was too stoned, there’s also no doubt that cannabis has decreased drunk driving.

In the end, no matter what, you can’t stop a dumb person from doing dumb stuff.


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Filed under Contributors, Stephen Carter

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