Although marijuana has low addiction potential and low risk of organ damage, with its high intoxication potential it can have significant and averse effects on the body. One of the first organs at risk of marijuana’s is the brain. Check out this infographic to learn more about the toll long-term and chronic marijuana use takes on your body.
Long term marijuana use affects the whole body
While cannabinoids have been indicated as safe and useful it the treatment of certain conditions (when used in recommended doses, as needed, and for as long as needed), there are certain side effects which can disrupt body systems of regular users. This is because marijuana affects almost every organ or system in the human body. Marijuana can truly interfere with the work of your whole body, or more specifically with:
- central nervous system (CNS)
- respiratory system
- circulatory system
- digestive system
- immune system
Here, we review the main ways that weed affects the body. Then, we invite your questions, comments, or feedback in the comments section at the end.
Marijuana effects on the central nervous system
The THC from marijuana increases the release of dopamine, which heightens your sensory perception. In the hippocampus, it affects the processing of information, judgement and perception of time. In the cerebellum and basal ganglia, THC influences balance, coordination and reflexes, impairing your motor skills and reactions.
NIDA reports say that marijuana taken in large quantities can cause hallucinations and delusions and contribute for the worsening of some conditions such as depression, anxiety, schizophrenia.
Marijuana effects on the respiratory system
Smoking marijuana increases the risk of bronchitis and infections of the lungs, and may worsen conditions such as asthma or cystic fibrosis. Although more research is needed to confirm that marijuana smoke can cause lung cancer in long term smokers, but some scientific evidence point in this direction. Plus, you can never know what kind of substances and toxins have been sprayed on the marijuana you are smoking, and they can irritate the bronchial passages and lungs.
Marijuana effects on the circulatory system
Within only minutes of smoking marijuana, heart rate increases significantly anywhere from 20 to 50 beats per minute. The pounding heartbeat can continue for several hours, which puts people with heart disease at a great risk of heart attack.
Marijuana effects on the digestive system
Marijuana has several effects on the digestive system. One of the first includes burning and stinging sensations in your mouth. Weed can also cause nausea and vomiting, which can further upset your digestive system and gastrointestinal (GI) tract.
Marijuana effects on the immune system
Although there is more research that needs to be done to confirm with 100% certainty that the THC from marijuana may damage the immune system, many regular users of marijuana report frequent viral illness. The theory is that marijuana can cause chronic and long-term marijuana users to be more susceptible to illness. At the moment, there is some evidence indicate there is a connection.
Body effects of weed…and your questions
Do you still have questions about how weed can affect the body? We invite your questions in the comments section below. In fact, we try to respond personally to anyone who really needs help.