Wednesday, March 02, 2011

You Know, I'm Not Sure About This Balloon Make-up Case...

Teens and young adults who start using cannabis may have an increased risk of having psychotic experiences in the years following, a German study found.

Among young people who had never smoked pot and did not have any psychotic symptoms, those who started using the drug were nearly twice as likely to develop subclinical symptoms of psychosis, Dr. Jim van Os of Maastricht University Medical Center in the Netherlands and colleagues reported online in BMJ.

In a separate analysis, those who used cannabis consistently were more likely to report persistent psychotic experiences at more than one follow-up visit.

While there's some truth to this...after all, numbers don't lie...there are other studies that indicate that any psychoactive drug can cause psychotic breaks, including alcohol and even caffeine and tobacco.

Indeed, given the recent explosion in marijuana use as it has become more tolerated in nations across the globe, there has not been a parallel explosion in diagnoses of psychosis, suggesting a casual relationship between the two, not a causality.
I'm not a regular pot smoker by any stretch, but I would like to see it legalized and regulated as tightly as alcohol and tobacco are (and even perhaps a little more stringently). After all, we live in a nation where the alternative for many people is to go to the local pharmacy and load up on legal sinus medications, and distill crystal meth. Is pot really as bad as meth? That's the lesson the government wants us to believe.