Marijuana, even though illegal in most countries across the globe, is probably one of the most commonly casually used drug. It is so popularly used that some people do not think twice about smoking it in public or asking a friend to smoke one with them at their place or at a party. Marijuana has been used across the centuries for medical and leisure purposes but there have been several scare tactics used by ant-marijuana groups to keep people from using it. The following are some of the misconceptions and myths spreading around about marijuana. Let us clear up a few of them.
There is a myth that cannabis’s active ingredients are stored in the fats of the body and that the effects of cannabis can go on for weeks. While it is true that cannabis goes to the fat stores in the body, and this no different from any other drug, the effects of consuming cannabis wear off quite fast. The fact that the drug enters the fat stores in the body is how it can be detected long after use but the detected residue is never harmful to the body or any other part of the human system.
Use of cannabis causes memory loss
There is a general belief that consumption of cannabis causes memory loss and may interfere with one’s intelligence and reasoning. It is true that individuals high on marijuana experience difficulty in learning new things but may remember things they learnt long time ago. There have been scientific studies proving this. However, this effect is temporal and wears off once the effect of the drug dissipates. Besides, even alcohol and many other intoxicating drugs have this effect and most of them are also temporal effects.
Use of cannabis causes loss of motivation
Another myth revolves around the relationship between cannabis consumption and loss of motivation. While the abuse of any drug will reduce an individual’s ability to perform normally, there is no evidence to suggest that the consumption of cannabis can cause lack of motivation in anyone or their ability to perform their tasks well. If anything, the opposite is true: most cannabis users have higher motivation to perform than regular non-users.
Use of cannabis increases crime rate
The belief that the use of cannabis accelerates aggression and increases violent behavior that eventually lead to crime could not be further from the truth. The worst part is that because of this myth and others, cannabis is still widely illegal in many countries and just possessing it may land you in jail. Research into this specific claim has shown quite the opposite. Most consumers of cannabis are quite peaceful and less likely to involve themselves in criminal activities. Besides, users of medical marijuana often only use it for medical purposes and in small doses too small to alter anyone’s behavioral patterns.
The use of cannabis kills brain cells
There is another myth that the continued use of marijuana kills the brain cells. The effects of consuming marijuana like paranoia, extreme panic, and freight, do not last long and never become permanent. The moment the effects dissipate, the individual gets back to their normal self. When an individual consumes extremely copious amounts of marijuana, they might experience toxic psychosis but this is not an effect unique to the consumption of marijuana. All drugs when abused can cause some level of harmful effects.
The use of marijuana acts as a gateway to stronger drugs
The belief that the use of marijuana leads to the abuse of hard drugs such as cocaine, LSD and heroine is misguided, inconclusive and statistically incorrect. While a large number of people who abuse these hard drugs might have started with or tried marijuana in the past, this is no evidence that marijuana is the gateway. Parents and everyone who is against marijuana have used this reason to try to talk their children or other people out of using marijuana but if you look at the number of people who use marijuana and the number that are abusing hard drugs and used marijuana before, you will see there is a big difference. This indicates that there is no correlation between use of marijuana and abuse of hard drugs.
The use of marijuana causes lung damage
While it is true that medical marijuana has some components that are cancerous and can cause damage to the lungs, users of cannabis who do not smoke cigarettes along with it, tend to have a low frequency in their usage. This therefore limits their exposure to the harmful components of the drug. Besides, marijuana whether smoked or otherwise, has no additives used by industrial cigarette companies to make them stay alight for example tar. This therefore, reduces the number of components that are harmful to the marijuana user. Unlike cigarettes, there are also several ways available to safely consume marijuana.