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Is Cannabis Slowly Taking Over Alcohol?- The After-Effect Of Rescheduling Marijuana

The use of recreational marijuana has significantly increased since the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration or DEA reclassified the drug (previously Schedule I ) to Schedule III, leading to less strictness in handling the drug. Although the purpose was to enable researchers to use “marijuana” freely for experiments, recent reports suggest younger people have started replacing alcohol with the substance, slowly creeping into the path of drug addiction.

According to New Frontier Data, 69% of younger people between the ages of 18 and 24 would pick marijuana over alcohol. The only thing stopping them from taking the substance on a regular basis was the rules and regulations of possessing a Schedule I drug. But that has changed now.

Since the rescheduling bill was passed under the Controlled Substances Act, recreational marijuana has been legal in 24 states. As expected, people have started openly taking “cannabis” instead of alcoholic drinks. Workplaces like Work N Roll allow people to take on marijuana while working, claiming that it increases work productivity.

One Work N Roll patron said, “I transitioned over into cannabis 'cause I saw that there's limitless possibilities with the flavors. And I found that I don't have a hangover the next day, too."

Marijuana is a potent stimulant, which might explain why people, especially the young generation, are choosing the substance to cope with stressful work. However, healthcare professionals are not buying into the new trend.

Addiction psychiatrist Colin Reiff believes taking marijuana early in life can disturb the development of the prefrontal cortex. He said, “The legalized age for cannabis should be around 33 years old when people are outside the window of developing schizophrenia. Or most certainly it should be after 26, once the prefrontal cortex is done developing."

It’s important to note that the potency of “cannabis” has astoundingly increased over a period of time. According to the University of Mississippi's potency monitoring project, the core substance in “cannabis” has gone from 4% in 1995 to 15% in 2021.

Moreover, these substances tend to linger in human organs longer than alcohol or nicotine. Hence, the threat of sudden stroke, bronchitis, lung injury, etc, is even greater today.

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