Marijuana’s Effect on the Brain



Marijuana currently enjoys a reputation as a relatively benign recreational drug with the potential to be a treatment option for a variety of ailments. This is predicated on a misunderstanding of marijuana’s effects on the brain - marijuana has a significant impact on the human brain in both short-term and long-term use cases. The impact marijuana has on the human brain is especially dramatic for teenagers using the drug, as their minds are still developing and are more vulnerable to interference and damage at the hands of this substance. Let’s examine the various effects marijuana has on the human brain.


In the short-term, THC consumption has been directly linked to an increased risk of psychosis, including schizophrenia, hallucinations, and paranoia. Studies have attributed this heightened risk to an increase in random neural activity in the brain which occurs as a result of THC intoxication. This “neural noise” occurs after the first instance of marijuana use, and the potential paranoia and other psychoses are therefore an immediate possibility. In teenagers, the risk of developing some sort of psychotic disorder is even greater, as marijuana alters the brain’s formation during this critical stage of development.