By Nora Doyle
Consuming marijuana has become more and more normalized in the teenager age group. It’s become more and more common in college, high school, and even middle school students.
Teens use it for multiple different reasons. It can be used in a party situation, or for fun, as a coping mechanism for different mental illnesses, or even just when they’re bored. These are all reasons that teens smoke weed according to Mentalhelp.net. Another major reason is peer pressure, and wanting to be accepted by other kids.
Teens tend to believe that smoking weed isn’t bad for you or has any negative effects on their bodies or brains. But in reality, according to the CDC, marijuana can have permanent effects on the developing brain.
The CDC says that frequent, or long-term, use of marijuana is often linked to students dropping out of school due to how it negatively affects learning abilities and paying attention. It causes difficulty in thinking and problem solving, and also affects the memory.
As for the effects on mental health, the CDC says that it increases the risk of mental health issues including depression and anxiety. Although marijuana is sometimes known for helping these issues, it makes it harder for the body to produce the chemicals and hormones that make you happy naturally. This is why teens become reliant on weed for their mental health, but it also has the opposite effect.
When it comes to long term physical effects, according to Teendrugabuseuse.gov, it truly affects the lungs and breathing ability. Smoke from marijuana can irritate the lungs and cause a chronic cough. Although, the possible worst symptom is that it can affect women’s ability to have a healthy baby. Excessive smoking of weed can decrease the male’s sperm found and delay ovulation in women so it makes it harder to get pregnant.
Despite what you may hear about marijuana, it is not good for a teen’s developing brain and body. Stay away from weed as much as possible and learn ways to avoid peer pressure.
You don’t need to smoke weed to fit in.