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Parents: As more states legalize marijuana, here’s what you need to know and do

February 28, 2017

About the Author

photo of Claire McCarthy, MD

Claire McCarthy, MD, Senior Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing

Claire McCarthy, MD, is a primary care pediatrician at Boston Children’s Hospital, and an assistant professor of pediatrics at Harvard Medical School. In addition to being a senior faculty editor for Harvard Health Publishing, Dr. McCarthy … See Full Bio
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Marijuana as a Pain Killer
March 20, 2017

@carenician I totally agree with you Marijuana has so many medical implications and yet it is sidelined as a therapeutic drug. It is also a substitute to Pain Killers and this property had been widely acclaimed by so many medical practitioners. I wonder why it still is being treated as a step child which no one wanted.

Dr. Md, Aftab Uddin
March 19, 2017

Thanks for marvelous & informative article.
Yes, Marijuana is the most illicit drug used all over the world. It is proved that marijuana causes brain damage, learning disabilities and reduce ones cognitive functions. Its legalization may produce many bad effects on student society and as well as others. We need more consciousness about it. Legalization may kick student lives of that state.
So we needs to prevent it and establish proper treatment for addicted one.
To treat the addicted one, At first we need to detect them and take him away from marijuana.
One of the biggest hurdle to quit smoking weed is withdrawal symptoms like insomnia, anxiety and panic attack, vivid dreams and so many on. To get rid from it about 80-90% of people start again taking weed.
From our 2 year experience about quitting weed, we recently published an article about “how to ease cannabis withdrawal symptoms” for them. Hopefully it help millions of people who are trying and trying to quit marijuana.
You are most welcome to:


March 8, 2017

Cannabis is that the least habit-forming substance out of tobacco, alcohol, and alkaloid. perhaps scaring youngsters with false claims regarding the toxicity of cannabis really will increase the prospect they’ll become users, or abusers. They before long discover it’s way less ototoxic and harmful than alcohol.

E. Schmidt
March 1, 2017

The conclusion reached by the above ncbi study reads as follows.

“CONCLUSIONS: Our results may have been affected by selection bias or error in measuring lifetime exposure and confounder histories; but they suggest that the association of these cancers with marijuana, even long-term or heavy use, is not strong and may be below practically detectable limits.”

If i have learned anything during years of University and a science degree it is that for every PRO study there is a CON study. It is irresponsible to think that only one side of an argument is fact.

Key phrases in the above study statment, such as admitting to “errors” in the study and results “suggesting” an outcome is not solid proof or fact. Also just because results are small or “below detection” does not exclude the possibility under different conditions.

I bevieve that a substance that has the ability to change brain chemicals at a time when a brain is still developing should be regarded with caution. I have witnessed a teen who started using “pot” in grade 9. This teen who is now an adult is suffering with bipolar disorder, anxiety, depression, psychosis and has tried to commit suicide on more than one occasion. This individual can not hold down a job. This young person comes from a loving home with supportive parents that were blindsided by this individuals drug use. This young person was an honor role student that wanted to fit in.

Im not sure if legalization is right or wrong but as with alcohol and smoking and with all other drugs it should be approached with caution and warnings should not be dismissed. Just because it is legal dosent make it safe.

March 2, 2017

I think that kid was using more than pot and the study above is all bs. None of those morbidities have ever shown to have a link back to smoking marijuana, talk about exaggeration this article is highly biased if you ask me. If anything Marijuana might be one of the single most healthful things you can do for yourself, it’s safer than a cup of coffee.

February 28, 2017

I don’t know how effective or helpful marijuana is. As far as my concern its uses as a drug. Anyhow thanks for sharing.

Scott Mortimer
February 28, 2017

Here’s the landmark study on cannabis smoking and lung damage, lead author Donald Tashkin UCLA 2006:

“Marijuana use and the risk of lung and upper aerodigestive tract cancers: results of a population-based case-control study”

The largest long-term study ever done showed no association between lung cancer and cannabis smoking, even among people that have smoked 30,000 “joints”.

Cannabis is non-toxic to the body’s organs and, according a DEA administrative law judge, “one of the safest therapuetic substances known to mankind”. Cannabis does not cause any deaths through overdose or long-term use, unlike alcohol, tobacco, and sugar, which each directly cause hundreds of thousands of deaths in the USA per year.

Cannabis is the least addictive substance out of tobacco, alcohol, and caffeine. Maybe scaring young people with false claims about the toxicity of cannabis actually increases the chance they’ll become users, or abusers. They soon discover it’s far less toxic and harmful than alcohol.

Where is the credibility of the public health community then?

Riven Colon
February 28, 2017

I think marijuana is a bad drug.

Peter Richardson
February 28, 2017

The impact of smoking on shortening lifespan was published in the early 1950’s, and yet tobacco continues as an industry because it was already well-established. I hope we have a better sense to advise our young – and adults – about the many hazards of smoking marijuana before it becomes established as a major industry.

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