The debate surrounding marijuana as a medicine continues with advocates touting its many health benefits and opponents criticizing it for encouraging drug use. We don’t intend to sway your opinion either way but it’s important to know what exactly this old herb-cum-drug brings to the table. That way, you can make an informed decision about whether you’d consider using it or not.
Cannabis contains what’s called THC or delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, a mind-altering chemical associated with psychoactive experiences when getting ‘high’ on marijuana. Since cannabis is generally smoked, the chemical enters the bloodstream via the lungs to cause impaired thinking, poor coordination, respiratory infection and cancer of the lungs, mouth and respiratory tract. Dependence on the drug means it’s difficult to quit with users reporting increased aggression, irritability and anxiety.
Despite the health risks, cannabis has long been appreciated in the medical community for the many benefits it offers. Chief among them are the protection of nerves that multiple sclerosis causes damage to and the treatment of nausea that accompanies chemotherapy treatment. Glaucoma, an eye condition that can lead to blindness, can also be prevented and treated with marijuana. Moreover, according to a study conducted in 2003, the drug may also be able to prevent epileptic seizures as THC binds the brain cells tasked with regulating relaxation.