Considering cannabis is the most widely used illegal drug in the United Kingdom there are an awful lot of myths and misconceptions surrounding it. In this blog, Port of Call answers some of the most common questions that we are regularly asked, and how to find a drug rehab centre near you.
Cannabis (also known as ‘marijuana’ or ‘weed’) is the most commonly used illegal drug in the country. Although, its use has fallen recently, with the proportion of 16-59 year olds who admitted to using cannabis during the last year dropped from 10.6% in 2003-04 to 6.6% in 2013-14.
While the number of users may be falling, the amount of confusion and half-truths engulfing this drug are not. So we’ve compiled some useful facts about how cannabis effects the body and what the long-term risks are from prolonged usage.
What are the effects of cannabis?
Cannabis effects vary from person to person but can include:
- Feeling relaxed and happy.
- Becoming giggly or talkative.
- Hunger pangs, known as “the munchies”.
- Heightened sensations of colours and music.
- Feeling like time is slowing down.
What are the side effects of cannabis?
- It can make some people feel faint or sick, known as a “whitey”.
- It might make others feel sleepy and lethargic
- Some people find it affects their memory
- Some people feel confused, anxious or paranoid
- Some experience panic attacks and hallucinations.
How long does cannabis stay in your system?
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the active chemical found in cannabis. Because it is stored in fat cells it takes longer than any other common drugs to leave the body. Research shows that regular heavy cannabis users tend to store the drug as body fat, which means it is flushed out much slower than in light or occasional users who seem to get rid of the drug much quicker. They might find that cannabis has left their bodies within a matter of days, whereas longer-term users are likely to still have the drug in their systems two to three months after their last smoke.
What are the long-term risks of smoking cannabis?
Cannabis can increase the risk of developing a psychotic illness, especially if users begin smoking in their teens and have a family history of mental illness. Joints containing cannabis and tobacco are believed to contain 50 per cent more cancer-causing toxins than cigarettes made from tobacco alone. Plus, cannabis can reduce motivation and concentration and can be harmful to fertility and pregnant women, whose babies may be born smaller or prematurely if they smoked cannabis during pregnancy.
Research suggests that cannabis is less addictive than most other illegal drugs. However, around one in ten cannabis users, and one in six who start in adolescence, become addicted. What often starts off as an experiment in curiosity, can ultimately turn into psychological dependency where the user’s life, and thoughts, constantly revolve around cannabis.
Make us your first Port of Call. If you, or a loved one, are dealing with addiction we can help you to access the right drug rehab facility at the right time. Take the first step today by speaking to one of our advisers for 08000029010.