Myths vs. Facts

Myths vs. Facts

Myth: Smoking one joint of cannabis is like smoking a pack of cigarettes.

FACT

Smoking any form of medical cannabis does not cause any of the health risks associated with tobacco. Medical cannabis does produce tar when burned and that can be an irritant to the lining of the lung tissue.

Myth: If I use medical cannabis, my job will find out from the registration and I can be fired.

FACT

The use of medical cannabis is being accepted by many people as well as employers. It is important to know the policies of your employer in regards to medical cannabis. Most employers will allow for an exception when it comes to medical cannabis. There are some employers that do not allow it even for medical use due to the liabilities that may be involved. In all cases, the employer is unable to search any database for medical cannabis users. It is considered medical information and can only be released with signed documentation. This applies to your medical office as well as the State of Michigan and the Michigan Medical Marihuana Program which is run by LARA.

Myth: There are many drug overdoses from using illegal drugs, even with cannabis.

FACT

There has not been a reported case of cannabis overdose. The brain-stem controls our respiratory rate, heart rate, and blood pressure. This particular area of the brain does not have any cannabis receptors. Regardless of the concentration of cannabis, there can be no effect on these vital functions.

Myth: Smoking cannabis kills brain cells.

FACT

There are no substances within cannabis that destroys our own cells or organ tissue. There is short term memory loss associated with cannabis use, but this is limited to the time of uses. The use of cannabis in children may cause some developmental impairments, but there is no evidence of damage to the brain tissue itself. More research is needed in this area. The overall consensus among medical professionals and in research journals is that cannabis does not have any harmful effects.

Myth: Cannabis is addictive and I don’t want to become dependent.

FACT

There is no known issues with dependence and or tolerance. The use of cannabis can be stopped at any time without harmful effects. Withdrawal effects occur in rare cases but are very mild in nature. The dose of cannabis, once established, does not usually require any increase. Most patients can find an effective dose and remain on the same dose throughout many years of use.

Myth: The use and possession of cannabis will increase my chance of being robbed or harmed.

FACT

All studies have confirmed that there is no increase in crime with the use of cannabis. The trend is the opposite. Research has concluded that cannabis decreases aggression in humans and in animals. There has been a decrease in alcohol related offenses in states that have legalized cannabis.

Myth: Using cannabis will cause laziness and make me unproductive.

FACT

Using cannabis at high doses will cause sedation and decrease motivation. However, when used medicinally and dosed properly, cannabis can be used without having these effects.

Myth: Cannabis is the gateway drug to other illicit drugs.

FACT

Cannabis is widely used by many people. Its association with the use of other drugs is an incorrect characterization. Research shows that the majority of cannabis users do not use any other illicit drugs. In fact, cases of alcohol related offenses and rates of opiate addiction have been lowered in the states that have legalized cannabis use.

Myth: Cannabis use in pregnancy will cause harm to the fetus.

FACT

There has been no association between fetal harm and cannabis use. This includes physical, developmental, or cognitive impairments. There is no link to low birth weight, birth defects, or withdrawal effects in fetuses that were exposed to cannabis use during development.

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