Marijuana Abuse

Sep 30 09:58 2009 Ricky Hussey Print This Article

Marijuana refers to any part of the cannabis plant which may be used to induce psychoactive effects. Cannabis sativa contains the psychoactive substance delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). It also has more than 400 other compounds.

Terms used as slang with reference to marijuana include ganja,Guest Posting pot, grass, spliff and reefer.

Cannabis is usually dried thoroughly and it is either smoked along with tobacco or eaten raw. Cigarettes of marijuana are prepared from the flowering tops and leaves of the plant. Smoking is the most common method of marijuana use. When it is smoked in a cigarette, the onset of effect is found to be occurring within 10-40 minutes. After ingestion of the dried form, the onset of effect is found to be in 1-4 hours. The duration of the psychoactive effect is around 4-9 hours though it may also extend to 12 hours.

More than 150 compounds are released in the smoke in addition to the compound THC. Although many of the mentioned compounds do not have psychoactive properties, they do have potential physiologic effects. A lipid-soluble plant extract, "Hash oil," contains a THC conc. of 20–65%. It can be added to marijuana or hashish which will help in enhancing its THC concentration.

Marijuana is the most widely and illegally used drug in the United States of America. Its use is particularly common among young adults and adolescents. Studies indicate that around 38% of high school students in the country have used marijuana or its derivatives. Its prevalence is so high because it is relatively inexpensive. It is also often considered to be less hazardous and toxic than other abused drugs and chemical substances. Highly potent forms of marijuana and its derivatives are now available in many communities around the world. Sinsemilla is one such example. Concomitant use of marijuana with crack or cocaine is widely increasing and is of a concern among medical marijuana care providers. Use of marijuana with phencyclidine is also increasing.
Marijuana produces perceptual modifications, euphoria and upper conjunctival injection. It is followed by relaxation and feeling of drowsiness. It is associated with hypertension, tachycardia, ataxia and slurred speech. These are the effects in low doses.

High doses are known to produce paranoid psychosis and anxiety along with confusion and hallucinations. I.V. misuse of crude extract of marijuana is known to cause nausea and vomiting, diarrhoea, fever, pulmonary oedema, hypotension, renal failure, disseminated intravascular coagulation and ultimately death. Psychological dependence on marijuana is common.

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