Will smoking marijuana during pregnancy harm the child?

There is no evidence that marijuana causes obvious birth defects. And this fact may be contributing to the impression that it’s safe to use during pregnancy.

But “it is not a benign substance,” warns Dr. Erin Lurie, a fellow in addictions medicine at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health in Toronto.

A growing body of research suggests that exposure to marijuana in the womb has other, more subtle, effects – especially on the developing brain. In a nutshell, it may increase the baby’s risk of learning difficulties, impulsiveness and inattention, as well as other behavioural and mental-health problems later in life.

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Separate research teams in Ottawa and Pittsburgh have carried out the longest-running studies on the children of women who smoked pot during pregnancy.

The Ottawa study began in 1978, with the recruitment of about 600 pregnant women mostly from middle-class backgrounds. Some of the women had smoked marijuana; others smoked tobacco; still others used marijuana and tobacco; the rest abstained from both substances. The amount of marijuana consumed, and the duration of their use, varied from woman to woman. Their offspring have undergone extensive testing at regular intervals into adulthood. A select sample from the offspring continues to be followed up.

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The Pittsburgh study started in 1982, and also included about 600 mothers, although most were from low-income backgrounds.

Both these studies, plus other research, point to the same conclusions. “I think the similar results lend a lot of credence to our findings,” says the lead researcher of the Ottawa study, Peter Fried, professor emeritus in the department of psychology at Carleton University.

In particular, the studies indicate that marijuana affects certain aspects of executive functioning, which primarily take place in the brain’s prefrontal cortex.

Executive functioning “enables you to make decisions and anticipate the consequences of your actions,” explains Fried.

Marijuana also impairs attention and visual problem solving – for example, doing something as ordinary as a jigsaw puzzle.

As well, “the lack of sustained attention usually means they can’t inhibit themselves from doing other things.” This can translate into impulsive behaviour.

Fried says some of the effects of marijuana exposure are not immediately apparent in newborns. It wasn’t until the children were four years old that cognitive testing revealed significant differences in the executive functioning of offspring of mothers who smoked dope, compared to kids of abstaining moms.

Marijuana Legal In India?

In the Indian context, marijuana is mostly considered as being of recreational use, but it is not just that. Recreational use is probably true for not more than 5%; for the rest, it has medicinal purposes. The cannabis plant has tremendous amount of medicinal value and its potential for industrial usage can hardly be overstated. China is investing a few billion dollars in developing different strains of the marijuana plant towards several objectives. It has proper factories for processing marijuana. Many countries have developed fabrics. It has unlimited usage in diverse fields, including in the field of semiconductors.

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The cannabis plant is something natural to India, especially the northern hilly regions. It has the potential of becoming a cash crop for poor marginal farmers. If proper research is done and cultivation of marijuana encouraged at an official level, it can gradually become a source of income for poor people with small landholdings. That is one part. The other part is, even if you are growing paddy, you can grow marijuana on the margins.

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India should ideally focus on marijuana’s medicinal use. It is known to help people with eye ailments, cancer, and joint pain. Incidentally, China is also doing a lot of research on marijuana for cancer cure. Marijuana does not cure cancer but it reportedly stops cancer from spreading.

Cannabis For Stress & Anxiety

With a global increase of medical marijuana use to treat health conditions, advocates and studies are showing that medical marijuana can be used to treat anxiety disorders. Advocates believe that the chemical makeup of cannabis can be beneficial in treating anxiety, while others argue that it can actually cause anxiety.

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Medical marijuana has been used for centuries to treat depression and other medical conditions. More than 400 years ago, cannabis was used to treat depression in India and has since been studied and analyzed to determine the medical benefits and disadvantages for patients. Today, many states across America have legalized the use of medical marijuana, but usage still remains illegal under U.S. federal law.

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When taking a close look at medical studies and results of medical marijuana used to treat anxiety, it’s evident that the chemical makeup, specifically the presence of the chemical compound Cannabidiol, commonly known as CBD, is the main ingredient to treat anxiety. Another compound, tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, can prevent nausea and vomiting in cancer patients, but may have a reverse affect on treatment for anxiety.

Medical marijuana, or medical cannabis, is the use of cannabis and its chemical compounds to treat illnesses, diseases and improve symptoms.

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The cannabis plant has historically been used worldwide to treat illness and health conditions. The American Medical Association and other medical organizations strongly oppose its use for medical reasons, but the American Academy of Pediatrics believes that the use of medical cannabinoids, the natural compounds that make up the genetics of medical marijuana, can be a therapy for a number of medical conditions, but do not recommend use until more research is complete.

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There are 85 natural compounds in cannabis, known as cannabinoids, which all relieve symptoms of illness by attaching to the receptors in the brain that look for similar compounds that occur naturally in the human body. Strains of medical marijuana are specifically bred to contain particular levels of each compound recommended for different conditions.

Cannabidiol, or CBD, is the cannabis compound that has found to have significant benefits for treating people with anxiety. CBD-rich cannabis can be treated for patients seeking anti-inflammatory, anti-pain, anti-anxiety and anti-spasm affects. CBD does not make people feel “stoned” or “high,” and can actually counteract the anxiety-driven tendencies of THC. CBD is one 85 natural compounds found in cannabis. It is a major element, making up 40 percent of the plant’s extract and has a wider medical benefit than THC.

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The other popular compound to treat medical conditions is tetrahydrocannibinol, or THC, and can be used to relax muscles, reduce inflammation, reduce seizures stimulate appetite, lower blood pressure and is an anti-depressant.

 

Canada’s Recreational Bill And Stocks Could Be In Trouble

there’s quite a bit of opposition to Canada’s recreational marijuana legalization efforts, and it could wind up pushing Trudeau’s legislation off the table altogether.

Though Canada’s current government make-up could reasonably be described as “progressive,” conservative members of Parliament could make legalization far more challenging than people and investors realize.

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there’s quite a bit of opposition to Canada’s recreational marijuana legalization efforts, and it could wind up pushing Trudeau’s legislation off the table altogether.

Though Canada’s current government make-up could reasonably be described as “progressive,” conservative members of Parliament could make legalization far more challenging than people and investors realize.

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Another primary issue involves how impairment for drivers behind the wheel will be measured. Though there are a handful of companies developing breathalyzer tests that can detect levels of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive component of cannabis, in drivers, there are no baselines to describe what would be considered an unacceptable level of impairment. For instance, a blood alcohol content of 0.08% or higher in the U.S. is considered impaired for a driver. There aren’t any guidelines for marijuana use, which makes resolving the concerns of lawmakers exceptionally challenging.

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If Canada is unable to get its recreational weed bill passed into law, Canadian marijuana stocks, which have risen considerably in anticipation of an expected legalization, could quickly lose the wind from their sails. The four, in particular, that are at greatest risk of having their valuations take a hit are Canopy Growth Corp. Aphria, Aurora Cannabis and MedReleaf.

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Health Canada also announced changes to its medical cannabis program in May that could have negative implications for the four Canadian marijuana stocks listed above. Health Canada plans to issue additional growing licenses, as well as allow existing producers to pack their vaults with supply, assuming it can be done safely and securely. In other words, it sounds as if extra competition and supply are on the verge of flooding the Canadian market. That’s not good news for any of these four companies.

Long story short, Canadian marijuana stock investors may soon wind up sorely disappointed.

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Toronto Police Raid Canna Clinic Marijuana Dispensaries

Police have conducted raids on at least two marijuana dispensaries operated in Toronto by Canna Clinics. The raids happened mid-morning at the B.C.-based company’s stores on Queen St. W. and Kensington Ave.

Canna Clinics has seven locations in Toronto. Toronto police did not immediately confirm how many of the company’s dispensaries had been raided.

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A bar owner near the Kensington clinic said police came around 10 a.m. Customers were let go before police closed the store.

Officers at the scene said they were going to arrest the staff members and seize all illegal drugs. A number of people who appeared to be employees were seen leaving the store around midday. One was crying, and others looked defeated and resigned.

At the Queen St. W. store, Det. Darren Worth said nine employees were detained. Worth said all of them had been arrested, and that police would seize “all the illegal drugs” and the proceeds from sales. Customers continued to arrive at the store while the raid was underway, but were turned away by police.

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A man who was working there when police arrived said the officers seized all the staff members’ phones, and didn’t return them when the workers were released.

“I think it’s a big waste of time and money,” said the employee, who would only identify himself as Derek. Staff members leaving the Queen St. store said they expected it would be open again by tomorrow.

“We do know we take a risk by working here,” said Laura Glatt, who has been working at the clinic for about a month. “Me personally, I’m all for the risk because I believe in the medicinal aspect of it.”

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Glatt said she understands the police officers are just doing their job, but thinks Prime Minister Justin Trudeau needs a better strategy as Canada moves toward legalization of marijuana. “All that’s happening right now is people are getting hurt.”

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Personally she uses marijuana for depression, sleeping disorder and eating disorder. She said it will be “maybe a couple of days” before the store reopens.

“I just think it’s sort of ridiculous, a waste of resources.”

Mexico Legalizes Medical Marijuana

The President, Enrique Pena Nieto, has officially published a bill allowing its use for health and scientific purposes. The bill was passed in April, with an overwhelming 371 members of the Lower House of Congress voting in favour, with only 19 politicians voting against or abstaining. It also received popular support from the Mexican Senate in December, with 98 senators voting to pass the bill and seven voting against.

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It also establishes that industrial products with concentrations of one percent THC or less would be legal to buy, sell, import and export.Recreational use of marijuana remains broadly prohibited in Mexico. But President Nieto – once staunchly anti-drugs – has called for a global rethink towards narcotics. He said they should be viewed through a public health lens which doesn’t criminalise users.

Peña Nieto’s decree effectively eliminates the criminalization of the medicinal use of cannabis, THC, CBD, and all cannabis derivatives, as well as legalizing the production and distribution of cannabis for medicinal and therapeutic uses.

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“The ruling eliminates the prohibition and criminalization of acts related to the medicinal use of marijuana and its scientific research, and those relating to the production and distribution of the plant for these purposes,” stated the Lower House of Parliament, known as La Cámara de Diputados.

This week, the National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA) held their Cannabis Business Summit and Expo in Oakland, California, welcoming over 75 speakers from all aspects of America’s fastest growing industry. Of all the distinguished guests at the fourth annual conference, the most notable was surely Former Mexican President Vicente Fox, who was honored as the keynote speaker.

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Fox’s keynote address touched on the need for an open global trade market for cannabis to allow the industry to reach its full potential, also demonstrating how the legalization of adult-use cannabis in his home country could end the intense violence caused by the cartels and illegal markets.

But it was the former President of Mexico’s comments during a separate press conference at the NCIA event that had the ears of reporters perking up.

On President Trump, Fox accused the administration of being “so crazy and so ignorant about what is going on in the world” and called the President himself “a disruptor” and “destroyer” of social progress globally. “The world is moving, and it’s moving in the right direction,” added Fox. “If anything, we don’t need America to be great — we need a great world.”

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Fox told reporters that Trump is “blind” and his “white, middle-class male” supporters shouldn’t be interpreting his perspective as their own world view. Fox added that Trump should not be imposing his will on the American people through executive orders.

 

Advertisement High school: Marijuana sommelier program offered in Colorado

A marijuana aficionado in Colorado has launched a program he hopes will make the title of cannabis interpener as familiar as wine sommelier, cheesemonger and chocolatier.

Max Montrose, the 29-year-old president and co-founder of the Trichrome Institute in Denver, said he designed the niche curriculum, which teaches students how to become marijuana experts, after he became fed up with the inconsistent quality and improper naming rampant in the blossoming industry.

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Montrose defines interpening as the practice of assessing the quality and psychotropic effects of a cannabis flower using only sight and smell.

Cannabis has grown increasingly mainstream in recent years. In 2012, Colorado and Washington became the first states to legalize recreational marijuana. Five other states plus Washington D.C. have since followed suit, and the Canadian government says it plans to legalize the drug by next summer.

Montrose said the word interpening, pronounced in-TER’-puh-ning, comes from a hybrid of “interpreting terpenes.” Terpenes are what give marijuana its distinct aroma, he explained.

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The courses are modeled after the wine sommelier program. Level one involves a 3.5-hour lecture and costs about C$220, while the second level costs about $335 and includes the lecture as well as a sight-and-smell workshop, followed by a test.

For the exam, students must take 10 jars of unlabelled cannabis and identify the five that are unacceptable because of problems like pest and mould and say why, then order the remaining five samples from most stimulating to most sedating.

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Level three is still being finalized, but so far it is invite only and consists of an essay on the horticulture and history of cannabis as well as dissecting buds and training in hashish, an extract of the cannabis plant, Montrose said.

Fewer than half the students who take the test pass, he said, adding that distinguishing between a couple of subtly different strains of cannabis can be as delicate as distinguishing between two feelings in the nose that are millimetres apart.