What Is CannabisIt’s the most widely-used illegal drug in Britain. But there’s a whole lot more to learn about it, and what it does to you
What are the different types of cannabis Hash• Hash is a black or brown soft lump made from the resin of the cannabis plant. It’s much less common in the UK than it used to be. It costs about £26 per quarter ounceGrass/weed• Grass, also known as weed, is made from the dried leaves and flowering parts of the female cannabis plant and looks like tightly packed dried herbs. This traditional grass was normally imported and much weaker than the ‘skunk’ types of cannabis usually sold now. Grass costs around £30 per quarter ounce.Skunk• Skunk is the term used to refer to strong forms of herbal cannabis that have increasingly dominated the UK market. They are, on average, 2-4 times stronger than cannabis that was used in the past. They include: sinsemilla, with no seeds; homegrown, plants grown indoors with the aid of artificial light, heat and nutrients; ‘skunk’, which has a particularly strong smell and netherweed, an imported form of strong herbal cannabis. Skunk costs around £50 per quarter ounceCannabis Oil• Cannabis oil is a sticky, dark honey-coloured substance and is much less common.
How is Cannabis taken• Most people mix it with tobacco, roll it up into something known as a ‘spliff’ or a ‘joint’, and then smoke it.• Some people smoke it using a type of pipe called a bong.• Others drink or eat it mixed in cookies, cakes or even cups of tea. Taken this way, the effects of cannabis can be more difficult to predict or to control. It takes cannabis longer to get in to your body by this route; and so if unpleasant side-effects do start to develop, it’s too late to do very much about it except wait for the effects to reach their peak and then wear off.
What are the Effects of Cannabis• Taking cannabis can make people feel chilled out, relaxed and happy, and they may get the giggles or become very talkative• It can make you more aware of your senses, and the hallucinogenic effects can even give you a feeling of time slowing down.• It can make you feel very hungry – this is sometimes called ‘getting the munchies‘• Some people have one or two drags on a joint and feel light-headed, faint and sick. This is sometimes called a ‘whitey’.• Cannabis may cause feelings of anxiety, suspicion, panic and paranoia.
The Risks Cannabis can mess with your mind• Cannabis can freak you out - it can cause feelings of anxiety, suspicion, panic and paranoia.• For people with illnesses such as schizophrenia, cannabis can cause a serious relapse.• Regular cannabis use is known to be associated with an increase in the risk of later developing psychotic illnesses including schizophrenia; and if you have a family background of mental illness, you may also have an increased risk.• Cannabis can affect the way the brain works. Regular, heavy use makes it difficult to learn and concentrate and research has linked cannabis use to poor exam results. This is a potentially serious risk if you’re young, when the brain is still developing. People who take a lot of cannabis can also find they lack motivation
Cannabis can mess with your body.• Smoking cannabis can make asthma worse, and cause wheezing in non-asthma sufferers.• It can increase the heart rate and affect blood pressure, which can be especially harmful for those with heart disease.• It is reported that frequent use of cannabis may affect fertility. It can cut a mans sperm count and can suppress ovulation in women.• If you’re pregnant, smoking cannabis may increase the risk of your baby being born smaller than expected
What is the effect of mixing cannabis and alcohol?• Mixing cannabis with alcohol can have particularly serious consequences - the accident rate is 16 times higher than for cannabis or alcohol alone.