How Smoking Affects the Teenage Brain
Marijuana is the most widely used drug in the United States. Cannabis has also been legalized in twenty-three states, which has made it seem more acceptable. Despite the fact that there is an age limit to purchase and use this drug critics are still concerned of it being more accessible to young teens. Even though this drug helps some people with medical conditions including pain, muscle spasms, seizures, and helps cancer patients through chemotherapy. It still has effects on a developing brain. When you are young and healthy but want to be “cool” you’d think “oh if its legal and other people do it how can it hurt me?” Studies show that in the short term use of marijuana it has been shown to impair you in things such as attention, your memory, and Deion making and learning functions. Many would think that those effects only last while high but they would be incorrect, those effects can last for days after the high. In cases when teens have become heavy marijuana users they have been seen to outcome including poor school performance, high dropout rates. Many times when the charts go up on teen marijuana use so does welfare dependence, greater unemployment and a lower life satisfaction.
Many like to think that “it’s a plant and because its natural it cant hurt” but the reality behind that is that marijuana signature high comes from the THC or tetrahydrocannabinol and researcher Weiss says that THC is not at all risk free.
Staci Gruber,PHD a neurologist said while still in the adolescents stages the brain is still under construction, therefore it is very sensitive to drug use. Being that the frontal cortex is the last part of the brain to develop it also hold the most important things such as personality, Decision-making and judgement. Also immature teens is the endocannabinoid system. This system comprises the physiological mechanisms that responds to THC. Being that that system controls emotional control.
Many parents have reported that they have been warning there kids about the effects and harms of smoking marijuana as a teen or even as an adult for over a 100 years. And teens have been ignoring that for about the same amount of time. Someone who is more a a constant weed smoker Is often seen to get chronic bronchitis. However there are truly more short term effects then they’re is long term. Some more short term effects are altered judgement, increased sexual behaviors that can lead up to the transmission of STDs, and those are just a couple.
However it has been reported that addiction is found in 9% of users overall and 17% who begin use in teenage years. Also in this research I have learned many things such as why the day April 20th/ 420 is associated with weed. It is because in the year 1971 a group of California teens known as Waldo’s met to smoke outside of their school. They had chose the time 4:20 because they extracurricular had usually ended by then. And so then teens would say 420 as code for marijuana. I have also learned that in high school the peer pressure of smoking weed and fitting in is so big, but not only that but also most parents aren’t ok with this obviously so then there’s the pressure of hidings it from your parents but is found incredibly difficult because of the nasty smell of it. So many have gone to try synthetic weed that has no smell because its smoked like a vape. This is called spice, or K2. In Chicago Illinois 56 cases of severe bleeding and 2 deaths have been reported they all had to be hospitalized related to coughing up blood, blood in urine, bloody nose, bleeding gums, and that’s just the beginning.
Chase Burnett age 16 died after smoking synthetic marijuana. This is the first death in Georgia that has officially been linked to this drug. Even though the cause of death was drowning, he drowned while being under the influence of this synthetic cannabinoids, that made him unconscious. This kid was said to be in perfect health condition. It is still unknown how much he smoked to put him at this level if unconscioness.
I am aware that the paragraph above doesn’t have much to do with how smoking weed affects a teenage brain, but however it does have to do with a teen making one little mistake. Who know he could have done this often and wanted to do a little more to get the same high he did then first time… or it could have been his first time and he did to much. Regardless of what the case might be reading this genuinely has taught me that chases one small mistake cause his his life and a pain and whole in his families hearts.
While doing this research reading of the state of minds these kids are left in and how it could alter my brain enough to change even my personality, makes me never even wanna write another paper about this subject. I will admit I was always one of the people that was known to say that weed is just a plant and can’t harm anyone. Even the one to think that this won't affect the brain at all its a all natural herb. Apparently I was horribly incorrect. Considering people have lost a lot because they were “just going to try it once” some people didn’t lose as much as there life’s by doing this… but might as well have. People who used to be successful, hard working family oriented people have said they lost it all. These people were the ones that said if I try it once it won't hurt… ok once a month is ok… ok once a week can’t hurt to now doing it everyday multiple times a day. I needed up losing their jobs and families to be a full time pothead.
While in the process of this research I have learned that this not only harms and affects the teen brain development and should be prohibited and not as easy to access for teens but as it should also be for adults as well. I have had my eyes opened to how terrible this is and would never recommend it to anyone, who is trying to go somewhere in life.
However I can say that as many side effects and bad things I see that this drug can do, I could not disagree with the use of it as medicine for cancer patients. I have learned how terrible it can be and how much it can affect people's lifestyles and ways of being. I just would really suggest it be sold for the soul purpose of helping chemotherapeutic patients.