Legalization of Cannabis in Canada Raises Concerns of Doctors
April 17, 2017
Major Canadian health providers are concerned about legalization of marijuana in the country. The Canadian Medical Association, the Canadian Psychiatric Association, the Canadian Paediatric Society all express deep concerns about possible negative effects of marijuana smoking for chronic users, especially those younger than 25.

There five basic reasons why doctors are concerned about legalization of cannabis in Canada

Immature Brains

Despite the fact that Trudeau aims to keep joints away from teenagers, legalization of cannabis in Canada will definitely make weed more socially acceptable. Immature brains are especially vulnerable to cannabis smoking. People smoking weed at an early age have problems with memory, decision making skills, and executive functioning.  Moreover, the negative effects of teenagers` early smoking is visible on MRI: “there’s thinning of a part of the brain called the cortex, which is very important in terms of thinking and planning and organizing”. To minimize the possibility of negative effects on developing brains it is possible to ban selling weed to people younger than 21. It is also possible to restrict the amount of marijuana sold to people younger than 25 in legal weed shops.

Legalization of Cannabis in Canada Raises Concerns of Doctors 1

Lung Diseases

Smoking is harmful regardless of what a person is smoking: weed or tobacco. Legalization of cannabis in Canada will also mean more smoking and more lung diseases.  Smoking weed may aggravate asthma. Despite the fact that there is no solid evidence that smoking cannabis can cause lung cancer, smoking can definitely make any pulmonary diseases worse. Yet CCSA claims that low to moderate weed consumption is not associated with lung diseases. So it`s better to consult budtenders in weed shops about healthy ways of smoking.

Mental illnesses

The association between cannabis and mental illnesses is not clear yet. Some studies link marijuana regular consumption to depression and anxiety while many studies prove that weed helps people in depression management. Yet it is clear that people who suffer from serious mental illnesses, such as clinical depression or PTSD, cannot self-medicate themselves and must consult the doctor who is able to define the right dosage.

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“Cannabis impairs your ability to safely drive a vehicle,” said Amy Porath, the director of research and policy for the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse (CCSA.) And no one can deny that smoking weed and driving is safe.  Marijuana affects the reaction time negatively, impairs short-term memory, and that is why the concerns of medical providers seem reasonable. Canada needs to elaborate effective drug tests to detect stoner drivers.


Despite the fact that cannabis doesn`t cause physical addiction like opiate drugs, a regular smoker of whose brain is still developing can have psychological addiction. Christina Grant, a professor of pediatrics at McMaster University in Hamilton, says that 1 in 7 teenagers who tried cannabis will develop a cannabis-use disorder. Disorder is diagnosed when smoking weed impairs normal social and professional life causing bad grades or conflicts at home.

Source: CannaSOS

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