Marijuana is a mixture of dried, shredded leaves, stems, seeds, and flowers of the Cannabis plant. The main ingredient is delta-9-tetrahydro-cannabinol (THC), which is a mind-altering chemical. Thus, marijuana is classified as a psychedelic-psychoactive drug, which causes changes in behavior, mood, and consciousness.
Medical Use – Used therapeutically to treat physical and psychological disorders.
Recreational Use – To alter mood, perceptions and consciousness.
Effects of Marijuana
Effects experienced depend on: how it is being used (smoked, ingested, vaped, etc), dosage, prior experience, any concurrent drug use, mood / state, and social environment
Marijuana and the Brain
This means, people up to age 25 who regularly use marijuana may have long-lasting brain development impacts.
Some studies have found:
- A possible decline in IQ among youth marijuana users.
- Problems with memory, learning, attention, and school completion
- Higher risk of developing depression.
- Slightly increased risk of developing schizophrenia.
A high dosage may result in:
- Paranoia and/or Panic Attacks
- Toxic Psychosis – disorientation / losing state of consciousness
Marijuana affects more than the brain:
Signs of Marijuana Usage:
- Very happy, euphoric, laughing at things that aren’t normally found humorous.
- Increased heart rate and paranoia
- Delayed reaction time or response
- Bloodshot eyes
- Increased appetite
- Impaired coordination and concentration
Washington State laws:
- You must be 21+ to purchase, possess and use (unless medically authorized).
- It is illegal to provide marijuana to anyone under the age of 21.
- If you are under the age of 21, you cannot enter a marijuana store.
- It is illegal to drive under the influence.
- It is illegal to consume marijuana in public.
Ways that Marijuana is Consumed:
The most common ways are smokeable marijuana plant and edibles (marijuana infused into foods & drinks). Using hash oil & wax (inhaling marijuana ingredients through vapor instead of smoke) is also becoming popular. Other ways are:
- Pills & capsules – capsules filled with concentrated THC oil
- Tinctures – concentrated form of marijuana in alcohol solution
- Topicals – lotions, salves, balms, and sprays that are applied directly to the skin