Cannabis – Overview, Uses And Effects

When it comes to recreational drugs, the cannabis plant has a long history. Cannabis-based products also have a reputation for having many medical uses. Read on to find out about medical and recreational cannabis, how to use it and what are the effects.

What is Cannabis?
Derived from the Cannabis plant, cannabis is an herbal drug containing cannabinoids. These cannabinoids are found in the flowers and leaves of the plant and are used primarily for making medicine.

Cannabis is similar to the hemp plant, but with different levels of THC. In legal terms, hemp is classified with less than 0.3% of THC levels. THC is a substance that has psychoactive properties; hence cannabis is illegal as per federal law, whereas it is legal to produce and sell hemp and hemp-driven products according to the 2018 Farm Bill. However, some states have legalized the use of cannabis as well.

Cannabis is most commonly used as a recreational drug by smoking it. Some people also take cannabis to treat multiple medical conditions. More on this later.

Uses of Cannabis
There is conclusive evidence of the many uses and medical benefits that cannabis entails. These include:

Treating nausea and vomiting during chemotherapy.
Treatment of chronic pains
Treatment of multiple sclerosis
Treatment of sleep problems and insomnia
Cannabis is also known to help reduce/manage anxiety and help with appetite. The biggest breakthrough came in 2018 with the approval of Epidolex, a medication to treat epilepsy. Epidolex is derived from cannabis and proved to be very beneficial for epilepsy patients, although it does not contain any THC.

Ways to take Cannabis


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There are several ways you can take cannabis, where each method has varying effects on the human body.

Ingestion: When you take cannabis by mouth, effects can take as long as an hour to kick in. And the sensation can last for over three hours. The type of edible that you ingest also affects the time it takes for the effects to kick in.
Smoking: Inhaling or smoking cannabis is a way quicker method, where you start feeling the effects right away. The peak stays for almost 30 minutes.
Topicals: Topicals are meant for external use only, meaning they can be applied directly to the skin. When it comes to treating localized pain or any skin condition in a discreet way, topicals are a great solution.

Effects of Cannabis
Effects of cannabis vary from person to person, but some common effects are:

· Altered state of consciousness
· Feeling of euphoria or ‘high’
· Vivid senses
· Increased heart and pulse rate

The side effects of cannabis
Heavy use of cannabis over periods of time can lead to some drastic side effects, both short-term and long-term. These include:

Degradation of the Immune system: Studies show that frequent use can affect the immunity system.
Impaired judgment: There is a higher chance of a road accident when under the influence of cannabis.
Memory loss: People who smoke potent cannabis are more prone to suffer acute memory loss.