One of the critical times when marijuana use can have serious consequences is during pregnancy. The main active ingredient in marijuana, THC, crosses the placental barrier and can harm the fetus.
Depending on the timing of exposure, this may reduce fetal testosterone levels, delay physical development, and cause teratogenic damage to the brain, affecting the child’s neurological development.
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Marijuana use during adolescence may be particularly harmful due to the continuing maturation of the central nervous system (CNS).
Scientific evidence has shown that starting marijuana use early increases the likelihood of damage to specific areas of the brain. This can lead to persistent neuropsychological problems even after stopping use, such as depression, anxiety, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and memory problems.
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While the harmful effects of marijuana use have been documented in specific conditions, it is important to note that marijuana has also been studied for its potential therapeutic benefits in some medical contexts.
However, it is important to address and understand the key risks and considerations, especially when dealing with vulnerable populations such as adolescents and pregnant women.