Short term effects of marijuana

Many people who try marijuana for the first time find that they experience little or no effects. But they do notice them once they repeat this use.

What often happens is that people relax and become quiet or withdrawn, either on their own or with others. They experience a mild sleepiness and feel ‘chilled out’ and are at ease with their surroundings.

Others find that they become subdued and much more aware of their surroundings, e.g. heightened sounds and colours.

Conversely, some people experience a ‘high’as a result and find that their mood is one of intense euphoria. They have a desire to laugh and giggle with others and an increased need to be friendly and sociable.

What often happens is that someone experiences a ‘high’to start with which then wears off, leaving a state of depression and tiredness.

Physical and mental effects

Other short term effects include:

  • Poor memory
  • Unable to think clearly
  • Anxiety
  • Paranoia
  • Lack of concentration
  • Poor co-ordination/balance
  • Difficulty in learning or problem-solving
  • Distorted perception
  • Raised pulse
  • Bloodshot eyes
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Dry mouth
  • Drop in blood pressure
  • Dizziness
  • Hunger pangs

Those people who are new to using marijuana, have a tendency to anxiety or consume high doses are more likely to experience panic attacks and paranoia as a result.

But even regular or experienced users of marijuana can experience these effects. Marijuana affects people in different ways so you may experience a different range of effects from someone else.

Anyone who suffers from a mental illness or has an anxious personality may find that marijuana exacerbates the symptoms of their illness. It can also cause unpleasant hallucinations that are not dissimilar to those experienced as part of a ‘bad trip’ – which occurs to many LSD users.

This is known as ‘paranoid delusions’ and can be a frightening experience.

Another short term effect is that of impaired motor skills in particular, those when driving. Driving is a high level skill which requires concentration, judgement and decision making plus good reactions whilst being in control of a potentially lethal machine.

But marijuana has the effect of slowing down reaction times, impairing the ability to focus and judge a situation and make an instant decision. This can have lethal consequences.

Anyone who has used marijuana should not drive or operate machinery until the effects have worn off.

These are the short term effects of using marijuana but the long term effects are more serious.

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