Myths about pot debunked

Published 12:33 am Friday, January 20, 2017

Editor’s note: This week is National Drug & Alcohol Facts Week. The Covington County Children’s Policy Council provided the following information about alcohol.


Because a number of states have legalized marijuana, many people assume it is safe. Here are some facts.


MYTH: Marijuana is not Addictive

Marijuana is addictive. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, 1 in 6 teens who smoke marijuana will become addicted. This rate increases to 25-50 percent for those who smoke on a daily or near daily basis.

MYTH: Marijuana is Not Harmful

Marijuana harms the brain.

Marijuana use impairs attention, memory, and learning. Research has shown that heavy and persistent use of pot from adolescence into adulthood can impact and decrease IQ by up to 8 points.

Pot use is linked to mental health issues, such as anxiety, depression, amotivational syndrome, and psychosis.

Marijuana harms the lungs.

The American Lung Association has reported that pot smoke has many of the same toxins, irritants, and cancer causing agents found in tobacco smoke. It also creates more tar deposits than traditional cigarette smoke.

Marijuana harms the heart

Research shows that pot smoke is just as damaging to our cardiovascular system as tobacco smoke. There is a link between using pot and stroke, abnormal heart rhythms, and sudden cardiac events.


MYTH: Marijuana is No Big Deal

Today’s marijuana is fve times stronger than the marijuana of the 80s and 90s. Some forms of pot have between 60-90 percent THC (the active chemical that causes the high).

Pot continues to affect the body long after the high is gone. Pot stays in the body for hours to days (weeks in regular users) after smoking, eating, dabbing, or vaping. For example, using pot on the weekend can negatively impact schoolwork days later. Pot harms attention, motivation, learning, and school success.

MYTH: Stoned Driving is Safe

Stoned driving IS drugged driving. It is illegal and unsafe.

Marijuana is the No. 11 illicit drug found in the blood stream of impaired drivers, fatally injured drivers, and drivers involved in motor vehicle crashes.

Marijuana impairs motor coordination, time and distance perception, lane tracking, attention, and reaction time.

Marijuana and alcohol are a deadly combination. Using both drugs at the same time increases your chance of a crash.


Source: Drug Free Alabama