The THC in cannabis can destroy critical neuronal pathways in the developing brain, which can result in permanent brain changes. The worst-case scenario is psychosis that becomes permanent and is then considered schizophrenia, a life-long, debilitating disease. No one can predict in advance who will be susceptible, as some can experience symptoms after a few times of use.
The mental health harms of cannabis are well known to scientific researchers.
Professionals say the evidence found in peer-reviewed studies is undeniable: THC in cannabis, even in low concentrations, can cause psychosis. And out of the drugs that can cause a temporary episode of psychosis, marijuana/cannabis has the highest conversion rate to chronic psychotic disorders like bipolar and schizophrenia.
Dr. Christine Miller is a Molecular Neuroscientist with a PhD. Pharmacology. She researched the causes and nature of psychosis for thirty years of her career.
“The causal link between marijuana use and the development of psychosis is quite simply the most well-replicated, high-impact finding in schizophrenia research today. Given current use rates and the strong potency of the drug available, it stands to be responsible for a larger proportion of schizophrenia cases than any other established factor. Who may be at risk cannot be reliably predicted. The time is long overdue for the surgeon general and American neuroscientists and psychiatrists, along with their universities and professional societies, to inform the public and for journalists to pay heed.”
Dr. C Miller
(click image to play)
There are hundreds of peer-reviewed, scientific articles that prove the causal links between marijuana use and psychotic outcomes such as schizophrenia.
- Marijuana use generally comes before the psychosis, not vice-versa, so self- medication is not likely the cause. Continued cannabis use and risk of incidence and persistence of psychotic symptoms.
- The consensus is that use of marijuana with a THC content over 10% increases the risk of a psychotic disorder by 4-fold: Meta-analysis of the Association Between the Level of Cannabis Use and Risk of Psychosis.
- Frequent use of more potent products results in more cases of schizophrenia. Proportion of patients in south London with first-episode psychosis attributable to use of high potency cannabis.
- Cannabis intoxication becomes Cannabis-Induced Psychotic Disorder once certain severity and duration criteria are met and CIP is heavily associated with future schizophrenia diagnoses: Cannabis and Psychosis Through the Lens of DSM-5.
- A person suffering from marijuana-induced psychosis is over 18-times more likely to lash out violently. But individuals with psychosis from non-drug causes and who are medicated with antipsychotics but not using marijuana or other recreational drugs, do not pose a great risk for violence.
- The causal relationship of psychosis with marijuana is outlined in a paper on the International Academy on the Science and Impact of Cannabis website: Applying the Bradford Hill Elements of Causation to Cannabis Causing Psychosis. (click image to play) (taken from Mom’s Strong)
Further research go to...
- All Young Cannabis Users Face Psychosis Risk
Communications Team, Dalgarno Institute