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    Marijuana’s Short and Long Term Effects On The Bra Essay

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    inMARIJUANAS SHORT AND LONG TERM EFFECTS ON THE BRAINMillions are abusing marijuana every day. In fact, 1 out of 7 high school students smokemarijuana more than once a day. Marijuana is taken very lightly and is the most highly usedillegal drug. For this reason, society should know its short and long term effects on the brain.

    Marijuana can effect these two areas emotionally or physically. Also in some cases physicaldamages causes the emotional response. Although most public information on drugs are fundedby anti-drug organizations, hopefully we will still learn these true facts of marijuana in spite ofthat. The brain is the most complicated part of the human body. I will begin explaining certainparts and their functions. In doing this to I hope to give a better understand of our brain whileimplicating the possibilities of chemical induced complications The brain with its 15 billionneurons and nerve cells operates using chemical and electrical messages: (Swanson, 1975).

    Thisis how we perceive our senses. Differences in the way our brain translates thesemessages can impair perceptions. Hallucinogens prevent the brain from receiving all of thesemessages in order. All of the information that we receive is through millions of transactions ofneurons, like a computer, marijuana alters these transactions. After smoking, or consuming marijuana, it is distributed in the brain.

    The concentrationof marijuana in the brain may be governed by an active transport process in the choroid plexusnetwork of blood vessels in the brain which regulates intraventricular pressure by absorptionand secretion of cerebro spinal fluid. one scientific experiment it gave an example of how thedistribution of marijuana in the central nervous system could effect man. At a high dose of 30mg. /kg. marked sedation and pronounced motor incoordination peaked at the one hour intervalsubsiding in 8 hours when over reaction occurred to external stimuli; man reveals incapacitationof cognitive and motor function. High concentrations of marijuana are usually found in thefollowing parts of the brain: the frontal cortex (the general association area), and hippocampus(short term memory and oreintation).

    As a result, perception of time, mood and generalcordination is impaired. It is apparent that marijuana intoxication effects the neurologicalfunctions and usually disappears in 24 hours, but can become a permanent malfunction. THCeffects the limbic system which is vital to some every day functions. The brain is made up of 3basic cerebral types differing in structure, chemistry and organization (MacLean, 1970). Theseare: 1) reptilian or brain stem responsible for instinctive (survival) behavior (and regulator of vitalfunctions of the body) 2) old mammalian (paleocortex) or limbic brain surrounding the brainstem (like a lap or limbus) having an important role in emotional behavior and motivation(contains opiate receptors) 3) new mammailian (neo cortex) brain (thinking cap) with thecapacity for symbolic (written and spoken language).

    The 3 subdivisions of the limbic corticalsystem or ring are linked by 3 pathways to the brain stem. The lower part (hippocampusimemory information) of the ring connected with the amygdala insures self-presentation(survival). The upper part is connected to the septum which is the area for pleasure. These 2 areconnected to the olfactory which deals with sense. In addition, there is a third passagewaydealing with sexual behaviors and visual activities. Any limbic dysfunction can result in emotionaland mood disturbences alienation distortions of perceptions and paranoid states.

    THC canreduce the blood flow to the hippocampus, which earlier I introduced as the controller of shortterm memory and orientation. To make a simple conclusion to all of this confusing data, marijuana results in chemicaldamage effecting emotional, motivational and hormonal disturbances. After 3 months of light,moderate and heavy use, evidence of irreversible damage can be detected. The effects of marijuana are mostly short term.

    When I say short term, I mean damagesthat can restore to normal. Most symptoms from heavy usage vanish in about a year and a halfof clean time. Although, not ever exactly back to normal relatively emotional and memoryabnormalites are restored. The more evident short term effects though leave in about one fullmonth.

    Since the more severe effects go away in one month one can see the potential for aproblem in a weekend smoker. In cases of consistent use, about twice a week or less results inkeeping the users of ever really being sober. The brain is one third fat. Cannabinoids are fatsoluble and not only do they collect in brain cells, but they also accumulate in billion of othercells in the body and are consistently being released into the blood stream. In the case ofmoderate twice a week use, before half of the cannabinoids that are are being stored newcannabinoids are being introduced.

    The cannabinoid release process is very slow and if there iscontinued use, it can make the user always stoned. Maybe not all of the effects of intoxicationwill be evident, but noticeable differences in thinking and talking are evident. It takes marijuanaabout 2 to 4 weeks to get out of your system. As much as one third of our youth are smokingmarijuana 1 to 3 times a week. If these statements are both is true then 1/3 of youth also shouldhave the problem of always being stoned.

    Pot not only seems to disrupt normal learning functions but also contains emotionaltering properties Marijuana smoking adolescents seen as psychiatric outpatients showed adecrease in attention, logical thinking, personal hygiene, performance in school, andparticipation in physical and social activities compared with their pre marijuana status. Thesechanges revised when marijuana smoking stopped. Symptoms of cases of always being stonedeven if they havent smoked that day at all, can still include: poor social judgment, poor attentionspan, poor concentration, confusion, anxiety, depression, apathy, passivity and often slowspeech. Some marijuana smokers also suffer from anxiety disorders. The most common amongusers is social anxiety disorder.

    Where the user is nervous around large groups of people. Someonly can function on one to one basis. Isolation of users is also common. Many people withslight depression can go to the drug to feel better. Marijuana will do that at first then it canintensify the depression. Doing what they have learned what helps they go back to the drug andmost likely higher doseages.

    Resulting in still more depression. One can see how a cycle ofusing marijuana to cure the depression that can come from it can begin. One of the biggest controversies in marijuana abuse is are the problems caused bysmoking marijuana, or is it just that people with problems are more likely to end up usingmarijuana heavily? After I just gave the symptomms of the pot personality, I will address thisstatement with 2 contradictory views. The clearest evidence that pot use causes the potpersonality is this, when the subject gives up the drug, the symptoms usually disappearcompletely in a matter of months. The youngster returns the real problem lies in getting thesubject to give up the drug. Dr.

    Dean Parmelee. On the other hand, people like John Morganbelieve differently. Most people think of marijuana users as dreamers with the attention span ofa gnat and no memory worth the name WRONG the picture is emerging from psychology labsis that there is at most a kernel of truth in this stereo type, while some studies find no evidenceof even subtle mental impairment in heavy users. And even those that do, are open to a range ofinterpretations not necessarily worrying to marijuana users. After all it might just be that smartcollege students tend to smoke lightly while others smoke heavily. One last finding of many short effects is interference with the maturation process.

    Thismostly deals with young people. Not only does the maturing process stops continuing like it issuppose to, it actually is known to make teens regress to preteen status. Like most informationon marijuana, it is practically impossible to give hard facts on how and why these notedsymptoms of the usage of marijuana take place. But, most findings conclude that it effects brainfunctions, including emotions, but can mostly go away after about 3 months. Marijuana has been shown to have long term effects with irreversible damage.

    Mostdamage is due to a chronic smoker who has built a tolerance and a degree of dependency tothe drug. Effects physically and mentally are also recordedTolerance to a drug develops when increasing doses are necessary to obtain the initialeffect of a lower dose. Dependence may be psycholgical and/or physical. Psychologicaldependence refers to a craving for a drug often leading to complusive drug use. Physical orphysiological dependence is a state whereby withdrawal of the drug leads to undesirable effectsin mood or the physical body. I will first explain the most common tolerance with THC.

    Marijuana is used to experience a high and as a person continually introduces thischemical into the body, it grows accustom to it. Hence, in order to get the same high you mustsmoke more potent marijuana. Cells in the pleasure center of the brain are being damaged andas more are damaged, more marijuana is needed. Also, the natural high is harder to achieve. In regard to dependence and addiction there is still much controversy.

    Most is on theexact definition, not about marijuana at all. Is it to need the drug and obtain it by any means?Tolerance? Or simply any mental or physical dependence? The facts are that marijuana isdefinitely mentally addictive and possibly slightly physically addictive. Marijuana releasesdopamine causing pleasure making the user most likely want to feel the same way again. Oneargument W. Paton, Every day I wake up and eat Kelloggs corn flakes because I like cornflakes. Does that mean I am addicted to corn flakes? Others believe that since it triggersdopamine in the brain it must be addictive.

    Long term damages due to marijuana are noted. Marijuana seems to have someirreversible effects, but it is difficult to prove that marijuana was the cause. The thing holding upmost scientist is the question of marijuana physically effecting the brain. Many studies show thatit does, but most times there are too many uncontrollable factors. Monkeys are usually used andthey relate this to humans.

    Such as in this experiment, after having the monkey smoke marijuanafor 5 months, then letting it be clean for 3 months, then see if there is differences. Abnormalitiesinclude (RER) chaos and synaptic vesicles. RER or rough endoplasmic reticulum makesproteins so that the cell can function properly. RER is in neat strands in the cells interior.

    But, inheavy smoking monkeys there was chaos. Synaptic vesicle activity accounts for our thinking,feeling and doing. Heavy smoking monkeys had synaptic vesicles that were clumped together. The vesticles were also filled with abnormal deposits of material. The conclusion was that thiscould cause the symptoms of a marijuana abused brain.

    Those symptoms are bad short termmemory, apathy, lack of motivation and depression. Most findings do conclude after smokingmarijuana for periods of time cause them afterwords to be disconnected from social activitiesand have noticeable differences in memory. But, most surveys or studies dont usually ask themarijuana smoker to be clean for a year. This would probably prove more of the long termeffects. It is somewhat disturbing that with all of the new technology, we cannot exactly provethat marijuana has long term effects.

    Short term effects have been pretty much proven. Millions are abusing marijuana every day. In fact, 1 out of 7 high school students smokemarijuana more than once a day. Marijuana is taken very lightly and is the most highly usedillegal drug. For this reason, society should know its short and long term effects on the brain. Marijuana can effect these two areas emotionally or physically.

    Also in some cases physicaldamages causes the emotional response. Although most public information on drugs are fundedby anti-drug organizations, hopefully we will still learn these true facts of marijuana in spite ofthat.Words/ Pages : 2,040 / 24

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