Psychotic Diseases Linked to “Skunk” Weed
Those who smoke skunk weed are nearly seven times more likely to develop psychotic illnesses than those who have the regular form of the drug according to a study. In the UK where the rate of available cannabis is roughly 80% skunk this is particularly problematic. At the Institute of Psychiatry at King’s College London scientists made the discovery after they studied admissions to hospitals for illnesses like serious depression, schizophrenia, and paranoia. Patients were seven times more likely to have used skink weed than regular forms of the narcotic even with increased risk associated with heavy use of the weaker variety of the drug.
“Our study is the first to demonstrate that the risk of psychosis is much greater among people who are frequent cannabis users, especially among those using skunk, rather than occasional users of traditional hash,” said Dr Marta Di Forti. “Unfortunately, skunk is displacing traditional cannabis preparations in many countries, and the availability of skunk on the UK “street market” has steadily increased over the past six years. Public education about the risks of the drug abuse use of high potency cannabis is vital.”
Roughly 1% of the UK population has suffered some for of psychotic illness including paranoia, schizophrenia and hallucinations at some point in their lives and the risk only rises with consistent habitual use. Teen pot users are particularly vulnerable and are more likely to develop paranoid personalities, hallucinatations and even schizophrenia later in life. Family history is the still the most common determining factor for these mental health issues but the drug may act as a trigger for these predispositions. Researchers feel that THC may be the cause. There is up to 20 per cent of THC in skunk, while there is only 4% in regular grade marijuana. Skunk also has almost none of a counteracting agent known as CBD (cannabidiol).
“Psychosis was associated with more frequent and longer use of cannabis. Our most striking finding is that patients with a first episode of psychosis preferentially used high-potency cannabis preparations of the skunk variety.”Tags: marijuana, pot, psychotic illness, seriosu depression, skunk weed