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Three Myths about Teen Use of Marijuana Debunked

What parents should know about teen use of marijuana

It is not uncommon for parents of a teen abusing a variety of illegal mind altering substances, to attempt to make a deal with the teen; “that if they quit everything else, they will be allowed to just use pot.” This is not surprising given that Marijuana is the most commonly abused drug in the world, primarily because of the euphoric effects it provides its users and the comforting false information spread worldwide about the drug.

Here are three myths about marijuana use, every parent should know.

Myth #1: You cannot get physically addicted to marijuana.

On the contrary, you can become addicted to marijuana. People who use the drug on a daily basis will usually experience withdrawal symptoms such as fatigue, poor sleep, poor appetite, and they can also become aggressive. 

Myth # 2: Marijuana is Natural, so it must be good for you.

There are plenty of plants which are poisonous to human beings, so just because something is natural does not mean is safe for you. While subtle, the effects of marijuana, if used consistently over time, can prove challenging to reverse. Some of the negative effects that marijuana has on the cognition are loss of short term memory and a slower processing speed, subsequently slowing down the brain's ability to solve problems. In the case of adolescents, prolonged marijuana use will also slow or stall cognitive maturity and neuroplasticity. 

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Myth # 3: Marijuana is Mother Nature's Natural Healer for Illnesses Which Cause Pain.

There is some truth to this, however the primary chemical in marijuana, THC (delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol), has been supported by numerous studies, as the main factor for patients suffering from AIDS to gain weight and slow the process of wasting away. THC is also a primary factor that prevents cancer patients from experiencing chronic nausea. As a result of these findings, the FDA has approved a number of THC pills, in which the primary chemical, THC has been filtered and extracted from marijuana. This is because actual marijuana has over 400 cancer-causing chemicals besides THC, and when these chemicals interact with THC in the body, the costs far outweigh the benefits of euphoria.

 

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Ugo Uche is a Licensed Professional Counselor who specializes in adolescents and young adults.

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