Two million people in the UK smoke cannabis. Half of all 16- to 29-year-olds have tried it at least once. In spite of government warnings about health risks, many people see it as a harmless substance that helps you to relax and ‘chill’ – a drug that, unlike alcohol and cigarettes, might even be good for your physical and mental health. On the other hand, recent research has suggested that it can be a major cause of psychotic illnesses in those who are genetically vulnerable.
This article looks at the research on the effects of cannabis use and mental health and is for anyone who is concerned about the issue. We hope that this will help people to make informed choices about using – or not using – cannabis.
What is cannabis?
Cannabis sativa and Cannabis indica are members of the nettle family that have grown wild throughout the world for centuries. Both plants have been used for a variety of purposes including hem
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