Current trends in cannabis use: Is the increase in use because of recent research about cannabinoids?
According to the UNODC’s World Drug Report 2016, Cannabis remains the most commonly used drug at the global level, with more than 180 million people having used it in 2015. With roughly 3.8 per cent of the global population consuming weed, its use has remained fairly stable over several years. In fact, there has been change in the social norms towards cannabis – predominantly in the west, cannabis use has climbed in parallel with higher acceptability towards the drug.
The rise in cannabis use appears to have been most pronounced in the United States. Estimates for the Americans show an increase from 37.6 million people (or 6.5 per cent of the population aged 15-64 years) who used cannabis in 2005 to nearly 50 million (or 7.5 per cent of the population aged 15-64 years) in 2015.
The increase in cannabis use, is considered to be associated with provisions of medical cannabis and change in the marijuana laws over the last few decades. One thing is for certain—a near majority of Americans believe marijuana to be a viable treatment option for some condition that overwhelms them.
As of May 2017, independent of the approval of pharmaceutical preparations, the use of cannabis products, such as herb or flower (for vaporizing), extracts (tinctures), edibles and capsules for medical purposes, has been introduced in 29 states of the United States. However, the legalization of marijuana in some states remains a controversial issue, and there continues to be a lot of debate about whether or not marijuana is harmful to one’s health.
The changing perception about marijuana could be attributed to the fact that the cannabis plants have hundreds of chemicals, known as cannabinoids. The two main ones are THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (cannabidiol). They play a vital role in the medical utilization of cannabis. Cannabidiol has come up to be a potential cure for numerous diseases including diseases like cancer, epileptic seizures, rheumatoid arthritis and many more.
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Author bio: Keira Wayne is a dynamic writer, who has written articles and blog posts covering varied topics. She is an avid learner who is passionate, curious, and creative. An explorer at heart, she loves to try on whatever tickles her fancy. You can follow here on Twitter here.