I don’t think there’s any drug that is as famous (or infamous) as cannabis, colloquially called marijuana. This drug has endured so much scrutiny in recent times thanks in part to a lot of government deregulation it has been experiencing around the world. For years, cannabis has only ever been known as a drug associated with criminality and violent behavior. It is only in recent years that more and more research has been done that slowly revealed the plant’s benefits to the body.

There is also an ongoing debate about the drug’s effects on mental health. Many claim it is beneficial for a number of mental diseases while others insist that it exacerbates a person’s predisposition in developing one or even trigger it entirely. So for those curious, here is a short list of things you need to know about cannabis and mental health.

1. Its effects vary

How cannabis affects people varies greatly. The perception of being high when using marijuana is not consistent among users. To some, they experience euphoria and a state of relaxation. There are others who feel energetic and filled with inspiration. There are some who are prone to panic attacks, anxiety, and paranoia when they use the plant.

2. Addiction is a real thing

Yes, you can get addicted to marijuana. Dependence on the drug affects one out of nine users. Symptoms of addiction include irritability, aggression, irritability, anxiety, and nervousness. While these symptoms are very real, people like to point out that they are far easier to manage than symptoms associated with other illicit drugs like cocaine, methamphetamine, and heroin.

3. Increase the risk of schizophrenia

The latest country to legalize the use of marijuana has been Canada. With labels like Best Online Dispensary Canada, people are more curious about partaking in the use of cannabis. Although there is limited information so far, available research shows that long term use of cannabis increases one’s chances of developing schizophrenia. This is especially true for people who have a known history or genetic predisposition of the disease.

4. The younger, the more prone

The younger a person starts using cannabis, the more chances they have of developing a mental disorder. This is due to the fact that at this stage, their brain is still developing. Frequent use of cannabis could alter the chemical balance and structures of the brain before it fully reaches adulthood resulting in altered processes.

5. CBD in cannabis addresses anxiety and depression

Cannabis has many compounds, one of which, CBD, has been shown to be a good anti-anxiety and anti-depressant compound. In the same study, CBD has been found to activate the endocannabinoid system in the body, which decreases the risk of the compound becoming addictive or habit-forming.

Final Thoughts

Our understanding of cannabis and its effects on mental health is still very limited. In fact, almost all studies available are still in their infancy, which means we lack information about the long term effects of cannabis use. But deregulation and decriminalization of its use is the first step in understanding whether it is beneficial or detrimental.

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