As the name suggests, recreational marijuana is the use of weed for enjoyment rather than for health benefits. The components of recreational marijuana are similar to that of medical marijuana only with different composition ratios. Both recreational and medical cannabis contain Cannabidiol (CBD) and Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) as major compounds along with various vitamins, proteins, and fatty acids. CBD is a non-psychoactive compound with innumerable health benefits. Whereas, THC is a psychoactive compound, which produces the feeling of getting ‘high’ and can impact various motor and cognitive functions.
The main difference between medical and recreational marijuana lies in the fact that the CBD is present in abundance with traces or no THC in the former. The ratio is vice versa in the case of the recreational use of marijuana.
Although many nations across the world have legalized the medical use of marijuana, only a handful of them consider marijuana legal for recreational use with strict guidelines. In places where the sale of recreational marijuana is legal and decriminalized, several manufacturers are trading through registered dispensaries. The customer can either purchase marijuana from these dispensaries or order weed online through easy access online portals of various companies.
The recreational use of marijuana is on the rise. According to data , after the legalization of recreational marijuana, the sales in the U.S. are estimated to increase by $31 billion by 2024 in comparison to approximately $12 billion in 2019. Here are a few such reasons that make recreational marijuana a growing trend worldwide.
According to a study, marijuana with a high THC level is very effective in treating anxiety. In contrast to the above statement, the same study finds that long-term use of high THC can worsen anxiety and depression. Occasional use and lower dosages can, therefore, considerably reduce anxiety, depression, and stress.
With high THC contents, recreational marijuana may show some medical properties as well. High THC and low CBD ratios help relieve neuropathic pain, reduces muscle stiffness, induces better sleep, and also helps with tremors associated with multiple sclerosis.
Research indicates that marijuana can produce side-effects concerning memory, learning, thoughts, and other cognitive functioning. There can also be a decline in IQ levels when the user starts at a young age. The study also shows that the impairment in cognitive abilities depends on the dosage, duration of consumption, and age of the user. Apart from marijuana use, the decline in IQ level is also related to many other factors like age, genetics, family environment, frequency of other drug use, and many other factors. Therefore, the study derives no definite conclusion whether a high THC level, that is especially found in recreational marijuana, can alter the cognitive functions in the long run.
Marijuana may affect motor functioning. For instance, smoking marijuana can be dangerous for driving. The THC affects the psychomotor functioning of the driver that leads to impaired judgments, slower reaction times, and no response to traffic signals and horns. Further, studies found that maximum road accidents happen when the driver combines marijuana with alcohol.
Marijuana is addictive. Research says that 30 percent of users may have a marijuana use disorder. Also, marijuana users who started early, that is before 18 years of age, are more likely to get the disorder. The high potency of THC is one of the reasons for people getting addicted. Apart from this mental health, genes also play an important role in increasing the risk of addiction in the user.
Marijuana is a Schedule I drug but a study revealed that it is safer than alcohol. Overconsumption of alcohol can be fatal and lead to death. No deaths were ever reported by overdosing of marijuana. Also, in comparison to marijuana, alcohol consumption can increase crime rates, lead to more car accidents, and impair memory.
Recreational marijuana can lower inhibitions and generate a feeling of relaxation thus, boost confidence in users.
Recreational marijuana can make the user high. Most people use marijuana to get high, which will make them feel relaxed and uplift their mood.
The most sought-after effect of recreational marijuana is energy. Some strains can increase the energy level of the body and heighten the motivation level all through the day. Yet, these energy booster strains can have anxiety and indecisiveness side-effects. There are a few available strains that can boost energy and ease the mind.
Social anxiety disorder or SAD is prevalent in teens. There can be fear, anxiety, and avoidance that can hamper daily lives and routine work. This study found that the use of recreational marijuana may reduce anxiety in some young users and induce symptoms in others. Many users have reported that marijuana helped in alleviating anxiety levels and promote social bonding, but further studies are necessary to know the prolonged effect of using marijuana with SAD.
Recreational marijuana can heighten the sense of taste, smell, hearing, and sight. A study shows that THC is responsible for stimulating appetite and enhancing the senses.
Marijuana use is surrounded by anecdotal references by the users more than medically proven records. Recreational marijuana may be harmless for some users but for others, it can trigger various physiological and psychological problems. The only research proved to date is that each body reacts differently to marijuana use. Depending on various factors including age, family history, physical and mental health, types of strains used, the ratio of compounds, and the usage duration of the products, marijuana can alter various body functions. Nevertheless, be it positive or negative effects of marijuana, what matters is you can’t ignore recreational marijuana, even if you are not a user.