Negative Effects of Marijuana Use

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When someone says the phrase “pot head”, what do people think of? Does the stereotypical street bum, pickpocket, or druggie come to mind, or is it possible that this type of person could be the normal neighbor next door? Marijuana use is looked down upon by society in general but more and more people are taking advantage of it. Marijuana has favorable effects for its users when it comes to physical feeling and experience, but it can also put our families and those that we expose it to in uncomfortable and often dangerous situations.| The scientific term for marijuana is “Cannabis Sativa”, but is also referred to as weed, Mary Jane, grass, hash, and countless other street names. Marijuana can be smoked or eaten, the former often in the form of a joint, blunt, or bowl. Marijuana use in the United States has been on a slow increase since its extreme popularity in the 1960’s and 70’s. Marijuana is illegal in the United States, but this obstacle hasn’t been able to stop teenagers from gaining access to it. It is estimated that at least 49 percent of high school seniors experiment with marijuana at least once prior to graduating high school and that 22 percent of high school seniors smoke marijuana at least once a month.| | The effects of marijuana can influence all aspects of life, from the users’ educational and extra-curricular environment to their home and family life. Most doctors and physicians believe that marijuana use affects a person’s ability to retain information and learn in general. In a quote from John P. Walters, “Marijuana directly affects the brain….It impairs the ability of young people to concentrate and retain information during their peak learning years.” THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), which is the main property in marijuana, attaches to nerve receptors in the hippocampal area of the brain. This attachment distorts functions necessary for long-term memory and also weakens short-term memory. The effects that long-term marijuana use has on the...
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