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Effects of marijuana on the brain (INFOGRAPHIC)

Effects of marijuana on the brain (INFOGRAPHIC)

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Short AND long term effects of MJ on the brain

Marijuana is known to affect functional parts of the brain when you are high. But marijuana does not only affect the brain for a shorter period of time. While some effects are completely reversible, it can also change the way our brain works. Marijuana can also impair the brain’s development in teenagers. And what most stoners don’t want to hear is:

The scary thing is, some of these changes may be permanent, or at least long-lasting.

How does marijuana affect the brain?

The THC from marijuana affects the hippocampus (the brain region responsible for memory formation). Brains that are influenced by marijuana during neonatal development, after birth (through breast milk) or during adolescence have significantly lowered learning/memory capacities. These changes are connected to the structural and functional changes THC causes in the hippocampus.

Long-term marijuana effects on IQ

Studies also suggest that initiating marijuana use in adolescence and continuing with chronic and persistent use is associated with a loss of an average 8 IQ points. In that same study, the subjects that measured lower IQ after heavy and continuous marijuana use did not recover the lost IQ points. Heavy use in adulthood did not lead to the same results and mature marijuana smokers had no significant changes in their IQ.

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Other neurological side effects of marijuana

The basal ganglia, cerebellum and hippocampus are not the only brain regions that marijuana affects. Here are more brain centers whose function is changed under the influence of THC:

  1. The cerebral cortex – associated with higher cognitive functions
  2. The nucleus accumbens – which is the ‘reward center’ of the brain
  3. The hypothalamus – responsible for regulation of the homeostatic functions
  4. The amygdala – a gland which regulates emotional responses and fears
  5. The spinal cord – associated with peripheral sensations on the body (pain)
  6. The brain stem – which controls motor functions, sleep and sexual arousal
  7. The nucleus of the solitary tract – associated with visceral sensations (nausea and vomiting)

Marijuana effects on the brain questions

Like our infographic? Don’t like it? Feel free to SHARE it with your friends on other networks. Or comment here. We’d like to hear from you.

Also, if you have any questions regarding marijuana’s side effects on the brain, central nervous system, nerves, etc., we welcome you to post your questions in the section below. We try to provide a personal and prompt response to all legitimate inquiries.

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6 Responses to “Effects of marijuana on the brain (INFOGRAPHIC)
cait
2:44 am March 14th, 2017

Hello,
I am a public middle school teacher. I have many many students who are using marijuana and think it’s ok to get high. I was wondering if you might be able to send me one of the poster above for my classroom. If I can get through to one student it will be worth it.
Thank you so much,
Cait

Lydia @ Addiction Blog
2:42 pm March 31st, 2017

Hi Cait. We really appreciated that you find our marijuana infographics educational. I send you a private e-mail from the pdf files in order to print them out.

Heidi
7:04 pm May 9th, 2017

I would love to have a copy of this poster. I am a nurse at a high school and feel this would be very educational for some of my students.

Lydia @ Addiction Blog
2:58 pm May 11th, 2017

Hi Heidi. Thank you for your interest in our infographics. I send you all our marijuana infographics in a private e-mail. Hope your students will find them educational.

Frank
6:40 pm August 22nd, 2017

I too would like a copy of the poster. It would help my students. Thank you

Lydia @ Addiction Blog
5:08 pm August 23rd, 2017

Hi Frank. Sure! I’ve send you a pdf file from this infographic via e-mail. Hope your students will find this infographic helpful!

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