The most commonly used of all the illicit drugs is marijuana. It comes from the hemp plant called Cannibis. The dry leaves, the stem, seeds and flowers of the plant are mixed together to form a tobacco like substance. Those who use marijuana roll it in paper and smoke it, calling it a joint. Another way of smoking it is to use a blunt, which is a cigar with all the tobacco taken out and replaced by marijuana.
In its more concentrated form, marijuana is actually the drug hashish. This is a sticky black oil. It is easy to tell when someone is smoky marijuana because of the strong odor – much stronger than that of a cigar.
Marijuana contains an active chemical called THC. There are protein receptors in the brain that bond with this THC and this sets off a series of reactions in the cells of the brain to produce a feeling of euphoria. When a person smokes this drug, it enters the bloodstream from the lungs and this brings it to all parts of the body, especially the brain. The areas of the brain that are most affected are those that are associated with pleasure, memory, thought and concentration.
The short-term effects of using marijuana impair the memory and thought processes. A person often has difficulty solving even the simplest of problems, but this drug also increases the heart rate and causes a loss of coordination.
The long-term effects of using marijuana include damage to brain cells, the heart and the lungs. Marijuana affects the blood pressure and reduces the ability of the blood to carry oxygen to the brain and other essential organs of the body. Respiratory illness often results from smoking marijuana, as does lung cancer. Even infrequent use can cause a cough and cancer of the throat and neck. The possibility of cancer is high among marijuana users because this drug has a higher concentration of carcinogens than tobacco.
Currently Indexing Over 75 'BluePages' Covering 1,000+ topics!