Sane man !

Friday, December 16, 2005

Pot not so harmless

Very interesting and sadly true. There are complicating factors and it's not universal but it's a definite trend. Just had another anecdotal tale the other day... The recent increase and change of perception seems to come from the arrival of skunk. Most of the interviewees are still for legalisation (and regulation).

Zerrin Atakan, of the National Psychosis Unit, summarises the findings: "Does cannabis trigger an earlier onset of psychosis in predisposed people? Yes. Does cannabis exacerbate the symptoms generally? Yes. Does cannabis use worsen the outcome and progress the illness? Yes."

The mental-health charity Mind's advisory pamphlet on cannabis details the symptoms it can induce - hallucinations, fantasies, voices, depersonalisation, loss of control, irrational panic and paranoia.

It is not just that the statistics do not seem to justify the widespread panic: current figures suggest that cannabis use increases the incidence of psychosis from 1% to 3% at most, and that the life-time incidence of schizophrenia per se remains at one in 100 (or 0.4% of population at any one time). There is also the vexed issue of causality. And what most of the research has so far established is correlation, not cause.


Post a Comment

<< Home