Over the past few months, marijuana has found itself in the middle of the spotlight, with debates ringing far and wide calling for its legalization or otherwise. While this is going on, however, the illicit use of marijuana continues to thrive, and with it are side effects that could certainly have been avoided.
Marijuana debates have undoubtedly included arguments that relate to the substance’s “deadly” factor. We have posted features before that presented a comparison between how deadly marijuana use is to the community as opposed to excessive alcohol consumption, and we definitely see where advocates are coming from.
Still, as in anything, not all substances are for everybody. The recreational use of marijuana may have adverse effects on a certain rather delicate group of people — pregnant women.
The effect that marijuana use may have on pregnancy is discussed in a feature on drugfreehomes.org. While the mother herself may not find any noticeable differences to her physical state while using marijuana, or other drugs, studies would show that it is the one we do not see – the unborn child – that takes the brunt of adverse effects. The child, after all, is more sensitive than his or her mother, and it is the child who will suffer highly from the effects of marijuana use.
The active ingredient in marijuana, tetrahydrocannabinol or THC, reportedly hinders neuron development. This can lead to the development of problems pertaining to basic cognitive skills such as memory retention in the child. Basically, marijuana use during pregnancy may have effects to the unborn child’s mental development, which will manifest themselves during the child’s formative years.