The use and consumption of cannabis of more than the prescribed amount can greatly affect a person’s intelligence, especially if the user started smoking or ingesting the drug before he or she reached 18 years old. By the time he or she turns 38, his or her intelligence will take a remarkable decline.
These were the findings of a study that involved more than 1000 people who were born between 1972 and 1973. Most of them were members of the sample group until they reached 38 years of age. 96% of them remained with the group until the end of the research.
This downgrade is said to very possibly be a permanent thing and can cause various negative effects in the person’s life. First and foremost, this reduced IQ would put them in the lower rungs of the society’s IQ ladder. A person who has an IQ of 120 at around age 18 may have an IQ of something much lower than that 20 years later.
This decline would make it difficult for a marijuana user to enter and survive college, get a decent-paying job, and live a harmonious and contented life. This markdown in intelligence would cause poor performance in school and at work, and also puts them at higher risks of acquiring Alzheimer’s disease, heart diseases, and other serious illnesses. Even if they lose only five or ten IQ points, this number presents a big disadvantage in comparison to other people their age.
The study that presented these data also revealed the following findings:
People who started using cannabis before they turned 18 years old experienced an eight-point decrease in their IQ upon reaching the age of 38. Those that started using marijuana later in life had a different experience --- they did not show any reduction in IQ points.
People who suffered from this decline in IQ were not able to take all the lost IQ points back even when they decided to quit using marijuana.
Other drugs and alcohol did not contribute to any lost IQ points.
Marijuana users who experienced the decline in IQ showed memory problems and difficulty in staying focused. They could not remember most activities that they had to do everyday, including the basic ones.
This study should tell us a lot of things about what marijuana can do to our brain. Marijuana has long been known to affect people in many different ways. It can cause several physical changes to person, as well as mental and psychological ones. Hopefully, this study could make people more aware of why marijuana should not be abused.