Cannabis is often thought of as "the harmless herb", although is is remarkably safe nothing on earth is "harmless". If you're gonig to get stoned, it's a good idea to know what the risks are and how to avoid them
risks that come with actually being stoned
Being stoned in the real world
risks that come with how you take cannabis
How you get stoned
Cannabis cause mental illness?
Cannabis and mental health
dangers caused by cannabis being illegal
Extra risks caused by the Government
for cannabis possession or dealing can cause you big problems later in life -
for the vast majority of people these are far bigger problems than the plant could
ever cause unless it's smoked with tobacco.
Cannabis is reasonably safe for most people if it's treated with respect and it's unlikely to cause problems to health or well-being. There iss no toxic overdose potential so unlike almost every other substance you can't die from its drug effect by taking too much of it.
Unlike alcohol, the recreational use of cannabis isn't associated with acts of mindless violence and a lot of people claim to get great benefits from its drug effects. Indeed, many people enjoy cannabis with no ill effects and do so for many years; long term moderate use causes few if any problems for the vast majority of people.
Most people probably use cannabis because they enjoy its effects, it's called "getting stoned". These are the so-called "recreational users" who use cannabis socially for fun. Others use it as a medicine and there are are many medical uses for cannabis that have been recognised. It's also true that many people use cannabis for such things as stress relief - for example to unwind after a long day at work and perhaps this is a grey area between medical and recreational use. Some people use it as a sacrament as a part of their religion and others for its creative potential. These are all uses for cannabis.
But some people just use it as just another drug to get off their heads, hammered and out of their trees - not just occasionally but day in, day out. It's this group of people who will run the biggest risk of getting health problems from cannabis, especially if they're young. This is really abusing cannabis.
Even the government's own anti-drug advertising campaign "Talk to Frank" accepts that "Most of the risks associated with cannabis are linked to regular, heavy use." Frank has a point; if you abuse cannabis it will not respect you, it is not a totally benign substance, after all it is a perception altering herb. What people say is true - it's got drugs in it.
Apart from those who don't respect cannabis there do seem to be some people who react badly to it, after all we are all different, so what may be fine for most people may not be for you. If you know what to watch out for though you'll recognise the warning signs and be able to do something about it and that's what this section is all about.
Cannabis is illegal and because of this using it carries some risks which really shouldn't be there - risks caused by the law which are in addition to those caused by the plant itself.
As always, we welcome your comments - feedback