Cannabis is one of the most commonly used drugs in the world. But do you know what it is and how it affects your body? Get clued-up here...
What is it?
Cannabis comes in many different forms. Hash or solid are cannabis resin, which is a dark or light brown solid. Marijuana or grass is the dried leaves and flowers of the plant. Some varieties of the Cannabis plant are more potent, these are often referred to as Skunk.
More recently there has been an increase in strong strains of weed. This includes Skunk and some 'homegrown' varieties. They can be 2 - 3 times stronger than normal weed and often have a more potent smell.
Cannabis can be smoked with or without tobacco. It is either rolled up in cigarette papers as a joint, or smoked from a pipe, or bong (water pipe).
Some people bake hash in cakes, drink it in tea or just eat it on its own.
How does it make you feel?
Dope will make you chill out and smile a lot. You might get the giggles and feel really hungry. All of your senses will be heightened. Food tastes delicious and music sounds really fab. You might lose track of time, and find yourself spacing out on the sofa for a few hours.
People who take this drug run the risk of feeling paranoid and anxious.
What are the health effects?
The health effects if you smoke it are similar to the effects of tobacco. There is increased risk of mouth cancer, lung cancer, heart disease and bronchitis.
In a very small minority of people, dope can trigger serious mental illness. It is best to avoid it if you have a family history of schizophrenia or similar illnesses.
Likewise, if you smoke heavily over a long period you will feel like you are in a permanent brain fog. You could end up with serious paranoia as well.
Some people use cannabis to relieve the symptoms of multiple sclerosis or chronic pain.
Cannabis is an illegal class B drug. The maximum penalty for possession is five years in prison. For supply you can get 14 years in prison. You can get an unlimited fine for both.