Marijuana is the most widely abused illicit drug in the world, and while many of the proponents of marijuana legalization will have you believe the drug’s effects are harmless, research into the long-term health effects of marijuana proves differently.
Did you know that weed actually CAN kill you??!
[showmyads]Everybody relax. I mean inderictly, but I do mean it. Let’s discuss some of the harmful and potentially deadly effects of long-term marijuana use and how it can negatively impact your health…
…In the long-term.
These days you hear plenty about medicinal marijuana being used to treat conditions such as chronic pain, but lost in the shuffle of these discussions are the health risks that marijuana presents.
Research shows that people who regularly consume as little as one joint per day could be doing damage to a number of different systems in the body. I know I smoked a lot more than that, for a long time. Below is a look at some of these systems and the potentially deadly health effects of marijuana abuse and addiction:
Weakened Immune System
Marijuana is commonly prescribed to people battling conditions such as AIDS for the management of pain. But studies also show that smoking marijuana regularly may weaken the immune system and damage your natural defense system against bacteria, fungi and microorganisms.
With a weakened immune system the likelihood of pulmonary diseases such as pneumonia increases, and these conditions can prove deadly in both ill and completely healthy people alike. You want a strong immune system, with a weakened immune system your risk of everything goes up.
Marijuana use is strongly linked to many of the risk factors which may lead to heart attacks and disease.
When marijuana is smoked or ingested it has a twofold effect on the user’s circulatory system.
First, it increases the heart rate making the heart work harder. Second, it lowers blood pressure making it difficult for the heart to deliver blood to the various organs in the body.
It is possible for this combination to be a deadly one, and increases the risk for heart attacks by close to fifty percent.
Respiratory Infections and Diseases
Much like smoking tobacco cigarettes, smoking marijuana drastically increases the risk for a number of respiratory illnesses and disease. Again, marijuana smokers consuming as little as one joint per day show a much higher risk for bronchial infections such as chronic bronchitis, and diseases such as emphysema and COPD. Over time, these diseases can decrease lung function and eventually prove fatal.
According to recent studies, long term marijuana use can and will cause cancer of the lungs and bronchial passages, and may in fact be even more dangerous than smoking cigarettes. In several different case studies, the early “markers” for lung cancer were prevalent in marijuana users, and appeared at 5 times the rate compared to non-users.
Mental Health and Brain Function
Marijuana in the short term causes the loss of perception, judgment, memory difficulties and learning problems. It can also significantly impact your ability to drive safely and is the contributing factor to hundreds of automobile accidents each year.
[showmyads]However in the long term, marijuana has been known to cause hallucinations, psychosis, anxiety, depression and panic attacks, and have led to increased suicidal thoughts and attempts, compared to people that do not smoke marijuana.
Let’s not talk about alcohol.
This is just a sampling of the many problematic effects of marijuana.
Probably important to remember that weed is a drug, and although the short-term effects associated with its use may not be as severe as other illicit street drugs, the long term effects can be deadly and irreversible.