Marijuana is a mind-altering (psychoactive) drug that comes from the Cannabis sativa or Cannabis indica strain of the plant. It is a mix of dried and shredded flowers and leaves from the plant and is usually green or brown in color. Higher quality marijuana is typically green, brown or gray in color and sometimes comes with small yellow, purple or red fibers that are found throughout. It also has a more intense and pungent odor then typical marijuana. Marijuana itself contains over 400 chemicals but THC (delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol) is believed to be the main ingredient that produces the psychoactive effect. Marijuana is a Schedule I substance under the Controlled Substances Act. Schedule I drugs are classified as having a high potential for abuse, no currently accepted medicinal use in the United States and a lack of accepted safety for use of the drug under medical supervision. Marijuana is grown in the United States, Canada, Mexico, South America and Asia. It can be cultivated in both outdoor and in indoor settings.
On the other hand, Marinol, which is the synthetic version of THC, is prescribed for medicinal purposes in the United States. Marinol can be prescribed for the nausea and vomiting caused by chemotherapeutic agents used in the treatment of cancer and to stimulate appetite in AIDS patients.
Marinol is a Schedule III substance under the Controlled Substances Act. Schedule III drugs are classified as having less potential for abuse than the drugs or substances in Schedules I and II, and have a currently accepted medical use in the U.S. Abuse of the drug may lead to moderate or low physical or psychological dependence.
Marijuana is typically smoked but can also be ingested to achieve a high. When individuals smoke it they either roll it up and smoke it as a cigarette (called a joint), use a pipe or a water bong. It can also be smoked in blunts, which are cigars that have been emptied of tobacco and refilled with marijuana. Sometimes individuals combine other drugs with the marijuana when smoking blunts. When marijuana is smoked the THC passes from the lungs and into the bloodstream, which carries the chemical to the organs throughout the body, including the brain. In the brain, the THC connects to specific sites called cannabinoid receptors on nerve cells and influences the activity of those cells. Many of these receptors are found in the parts of the brain that influence pleasure, memory, thought, concentration, sensory and time perception and coordinated movement. Marijuana can also be mixed with foods such as brownies or brewed as a tea and served cold over ice “Chronic Iced-Tea”.
The short-term effects of marijuana use include problems with memory and learning, distorted perception, difficulty in thinking and problem solving and loss of coordination. Individuals who have used marijuana have affected perception and coordination which impairs their driving abilities. Short-term physical effects from marijuana use include sedation, blood shot eyes, increased heart rate, coughing from lung irritation, increased appetite and decreased blood pressure. Long-term chronic marijuana use is associated with Amotivational Syndrome. This is characterized by apathy, impairment of judgment, memory and concentration, and loss of motivation, ambition and interest in the pursuit of personal goals. Like tobacco users, marijuana smokers experience serious health problems such as bronchitis, emphysema and bronchial asthma. Extended marijuana use may cause suppression of the immune system. Since marijuana contains toxins and carcinogens, smokers increase their risk of head, neck, lungs and respiratory track types of cancers.
When individuals use high doses of marijuana it can result in mental confusion, panic reactions and hallucinations. Researchers have also found an association between marijuana use and an increased risk of depression. They have also found a correlation for an increased risk and earlier onset of schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders, especially for teens that have a genetic predisposition. Withdrawal from chronic use of high doses of marijuana causes physical symptoms such as; headaches, shakiness, sweating, stomach pains and nausea, restlessness, irritability, sleep difficulties and decreased appetite. Overdose effects include confusion, panic reactions and hallucinations. No death from overdose of marijuana has been reported.
Street names of marijuana include: Aunt Mary, BC Bud, Blunts, Boom, Chronic, Dope, Gangsta, Ganja, Grass, Hash, Herb, Hydro, Indo, Joint, Kif, Mary Jane, Mota, Pot, Reefer, Sinsemilla, Skunk, Smoke, Stank, and Weed. Drugs causing similar effects: Hashish and hashish oil are drugs made from the cannabis plant that are like marijuana, only stronger.
If you or someone you love has a problem with Marijuana, call our professionals at Sobriety Resources (855)289-2640 today to experience the freedom of sobriety.