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Drug Addiction in Mexico Increases Dramatically

July 30th, 2008 · No Comments

According to a recent report in USA Today and information from the Mexican Health Ministry, new patients at drug treatment centers quadrupled since 2000.

The new border fence and intensified patrols by both Mexican and U.S. federal agents have made it harder for Mexican cartels to get street drugs into the USA.

Mexican President Felipe Calderón warned last month that cartels are no longer just trying to get drugs to the USA, but generate consumers “here in Mexico who will buy them, and buy them for the rest of their lives.”

“We used to be mainly a country of transit for drugs. Now we’ve become a consumer,” says Ricardo Sánchez, director of research for the health ministry’s rehab centers.

Prices of drugs have increased in the USA but have decreased in Mexico making it more available.

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Tags: Street Drugs

Marijuana and Depression

May 11th, 2008 · No Comments

dried marijuanaResearch shows that some teens are “self medicating” by using street drugs like marijuana to try and overcome feelings of depression. What they do not realize is that marijuana can actually compound the problem.

A recent report from the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, shows a staggering two million teens felt depressed at some point during the past year, and depressed teens are more than twice as likely as non-depressed teens to have used marijuana during that same period.

Depressed teens are also almost twice as likely to have used illicit drugs as non-depressed teens. They are also more than twice as likely as their peers to abuse or become dependent on marijuana. Marijuana use is associated with depression, suicidal thoughts, and suicide attempts.

“Marijuana is not the answer. Too many young people are making a bad situation worse by using marijuana in a misguided effort to relieve their symptoms of depression,” said John P. Walters, Director, National Drug Control Policy. “Parents must not dismiss teen moodiness as a passing phase. Look closely at your teen’s behavior because it could be a sign of something more serious.”

More teens use marijuana than all other illicit drugs combined. The new report shows the following:

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Tags: Marijuana Addiction

Marijuana and Meth: Treatment That Works

November 16th, 2007 · No Comments

Julia holds an M.A. in Clinical Psychology, as well as a California marriage and family therapy license and has frequently appeared as an expert on radio and television programs. She is the author of The Mood Cure, a brain repair manual for mood and addiction problems, and the best selling The Diet Cure on recovery from carbohydrate addiction. She also presents training seminars in amino acid therapy for treatment of chemical dependency.

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Tags: Drug Addiction Alternative Treatment

Marijuana and Behavioral Development

November 12th, 2007 · No Comments

Prenatal marijuana exposure had significant effects on the developing central nervous system (CNS) in children and adolescents according to recent research. These findings were presented in a symposium about in utero substance exposure at the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry 54th Annual Meeting .

Weed Woes

“For people who grew up in the 1960s, this was a big disappointment,” said Nancy L. Day, PhD, from the Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, referring to the marijuana study findings. “We all thought marijuana was a good drug, but it’s not,” she added.

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Tags: Marijuana Addiction

Marijuana Fog, Driving and Coping

October 17th, 2007 · No Comments

The immediate effects of smoking marijuana are mild euphoria and, often, drowsiness. Research shows that brain receptors respond to cannabis by releasing the feel-good neurotransmitter, dopamine. Cannabis’s effects on judgment, coordination, and short-term memory make it inadvisable to drive, to operate heavy machinery, or to try to learn anything new while under its influence. This is due to the high concentration of cannabis receptors in both the hippocampus, the part of the brain that controls memory, and the cerebellum, the part of the brain that governs motor coordination. Moreover, these effects may actually last longer than those of alcohol.

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Tags: Marijuana Addiction

ADHD and Street Drugs

August 7th, 2007 · No Comments

Researchers have generally known that people with ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) are more likely than others to smoke cigarettes and abuse alcohol, marijuana, cocaine and other street drugs.

In a recent study, a team led by Dr. Nora Volkow, director of the NIH’s National Institute on Drug Abuse, documented decreased dopamine activity in the brains of a group of adults with ADHD. Dopamine is associated with feeling good.

The researchers compared brain scans on 19 adults with ADHD — average age 32 — who had never received medication for the condition to brain scans of 24 healthy adults of a similar age without ADHD.

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Tags: Drugs and Brain Disorders · Street Drugs

Marijuana and Psychosis

August 2nd, 2007 · No Comments

marijuana plant

Marijuana is the most frequently used illegal substance in many countries, including the United Kingdom and the United States and it seems to increase the chance of becoming psychotic, researchers report in an analysis of past research that brings up the old issue of whether pot is dangerous.

The new review suggests that even infrequent use of marijuana could raise the small but real risk of this serious mental illness by 40 percent.

Doctors have long suspected a connection and say the latest findings underline the need to highlight marijuana’s long-term risks. The research, paid for by the British Health Department, was published recently in the medical journal The Lancet. (thelancet.com)

“The available evidence now suggests that cannabis is not as harmless as many people think,” said Dr. Stanley Zammit, one of the study’s authors and a lecturer in the department of psychological medicine at Cardiff University.

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Tags: Marijuana Addiction

Drugs, Alcohol and ADD

July 15th, 2007 · No Comments

Drug and alcohol abuse are very common among teenagers and adults with untreated ADD Attention Deficit Disorder. One study by psychiatrist Joseph Biederman and his colleagues at Harvard University indicated that 52 percent of untreated ADD adults abuse drugs or alcohol.

The drugs that they choose to abuse are alcohol and marijuana to settle the internal restlessness they feel, and cocaine and methaphetamines to feel more energetic and focused. Nicotine use (cigarettes, cigars, and chewing tobacco) is much more common in people with ADD, as is the intake of large amounts of caffeine. Nicotine and caffeine are mild stimulants.

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Tags: Alcohol Addiction · Drugs and Brain Disorders · Marijuana Addiction

Marijuana Use Damages The Brain

June 2nd, 2007 · No Comments

Psychiatrist, Dr. Daniel G. Amen, is a pioneer in scans called brain SPECT imaging. SPECT stands for single photon emission computed tomography and measures blood flow and activity patterns in the brain.

It basically tells three things: areas of the brain that work well, areas of the brain that work too hard and areas of the brain that do not work hard enough.

In studies of patients who had smoked marijuana, Dr. Amen found significant changes in brain activity, especially those who were heavy users. Decreased brain activity was found in the prefrontal cortex and temporal lobes.

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Tags: Drugs and Brain Disorders · Marijuana Addiction

Marijuana Facts

May 7th, 2007 · No Comments

Marijuana is the most frequently used illegal drug in the United States. It is a green, brown, or gray mixture of dried, shredded leaves, stems, seeds, and flowers of the hemp plant. It is called by numerous street names such as pot, herb, weed, grass, boom, Mary Jane, gangster, or chronic. There are also names for different strains or “brands” of marijuana, such as “Texas tea,” “Maui wowie,” and “Chronic.”

Most users roll loose marijuana into a cigarette (called a joint or a nail) or smoke it in a pipe. One well-known type of water pipe is the bong. Some users mix marijuana into foods or use it to brew a tea.

Another method is to slice open a cigar and replace the tobacco with marijuana, making what’s called a blunt. Some blunts include crack cocaine, a combination known by various street names, such as “primos” or “woolies.” Joints and blunts often are dipped in PCP and are called “happy sticks,” “wicky sticks,” or “love boat.” One book of American slang lists more than 200 terms for various kinds of marijuana.

Why do People use Marijuana?

Curiosity and the desire to fit into a social group are common reasons to use the drug. Certainly, youngsters who have already begun to smoke cigarettes and/or use alcohol are at high risk for marijuana use.

Research suggests that the use of alcohol and drugs by other family members plays a strong role in whether children start using drugs. Some young people who take drugs do not get along with their parents. Some have a network of friends who use drugs and urge them to do the same (peer pressure). All aspects of a child’s environment – home, school, neighborhood – help to determine whether the child will try drugs.

Young people who become more heavily involved with marijuana can become dependent, making it difficult for them to quit. Others mention psychological coping as a reason for their use – to deal with anxiety, anger, depression, boredom, and so forth. But marijuana use is not an effective method for coping with life’s problems, and staying high can be a way of simply not dealing with the problems and challenges of growing up.

Health Effects of The Drug

All forms of marijuana are mind-altering and it changes how the brain works. It contains THC (delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol), the main active chemical in marijuana. It also contains more than 400 other chemicals. Marijuana’s effects on the user depend on it’s strength or potency, which is related to the amount of THC it contains. The THC content has been increasing since the 1970s.

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Tags: Marijuana Addiction