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Blog Post Week 36 2

What Effects Does Marijuana Have On The Brain?

endocannibinoid overstimulation, marijuana effects on the brain

Marijuana can be a dangerous drug, and the push to legalize it in some states may send the wrong message to kids and younger adults. What effect does marijuana have on the brain, and why is it harmful? THC is the active compound in this plant, but it is only one of many. When smoked the THC from the plant passes into the lungs and then into the bloodstream, where it is carried to all of the internal organs and areas. In the brain there are cells called cannabinoid receptors, and they play a role in brain growth and development. The body makes compounds which are similar to THC but these occur naturally, and they activate the receptors in the brain in order to enhance communication between the cells and promote good function and tissue development.

Does that mean you will get a better brain if you smoke pot? No! When marijuana is smoked this causes the endocannibinoid system in the brain to become overwhelmed, and this has a detrimental effect instead. The user will experience distorted perceptions, and they will notice that their coordination is impaired. In addition they will start to have problems in thinking clearly and remembering important details. Problem solving may be impossible, and the user may become less active. Memory and normal learning are disrupted, causing the brain cells to function less than efficiently. This causes poor grades, a lack of attention, and many other problems with daily life. After marijuana use has been a daily factor for some time there are long term changes that can also occur, including less of the natural endocannabiniods being produced as a result of the over activation of these receptors.

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