Marijuana use among the U.S. population has been significantly higher in recent years, and now about one in ten Americans aged 12 or older has tried cannabis.Additionally, studies show that the number of people who smoke marijuana has risen by a staggering 40%, which is more than any other substance.
There was a shifting marijuana and tobacco relationship in this trend, where the older generation preferred cigarette smoking. In contrast, the newer generation finds cannabis use preferable, thus minimizing regular cigarette smoking.
This article explains why we see this trend, along with its causes. Additionally, it explores the rise in popularity of marijuana and what people gain when they smoke marijuana. Furthermore, we shall look at the challenges to this new habit and how to counter them.
What’s The Present Situation?
Gallup, the analytics and advisory national institute, has been conducting research into recreational drugs and other substances since the early 1930s. A Gallup poll found that smoking cigarettes and other forms of tobacco use are losing their firmly held second position to marijuana.
A large portion of the U.S. population consumes alcohol, which isn’t likely to change any time soon. However, marijuana has taken the second slot away from traditional cigarettes, necessitating the need for further understanding. In the past, people smoked cigarettes at a staggering level but nowadays people prefer marijauna.In this regards, you can consider reading how to smoke weed? if you are a newbie at marijauna world.
Perhaps this shift is due to the mounting evidence of the harmful effects of smoking tobacco. Additionally, the earlier stigma associated with marijuana is fading away as more people realize the plant’s benefits.
While there were warnings of the harmful effects of smoking cigarettes, most people ignored them as mere speculation. However, younger people are shunning smoking cigarettes. Many of them have never even engaged in smoking cigarettes. They quickly changed their minds after witnessing what lung cancer and other cigarette-related diseases affect their families.
In contrast, the acceptance of the medicinal qualities of the cannabis plant altered perceptions and has driven more people to smoke marijuana. This is because cannabis use provides the double benefit of that euphoric feeling while supplying you with CBD. Therefore, few people smoked cigarettes.
Additionally, the legislation allows for controlled possession, distribution, and consumption of cannabis products. For example, the 2018 Farm Bill was a step in the right direction, allowing greater access to marijuana products. As such, only about 10% of the American population reports being cigarette smokers.
In addition, three in every ten non-smokers are former cigarette smokers. This reduction is huge, considering 45% of the population used to smoke regular cigarettes in the mid-1950s.
It’s worth mentioning that the decrease in the number of cigarette smokers is set to continue. Health organizations and lobby groups continue to educate people on the harmful effects of tobacco.
Legislation forces cigarette manufacturers to print warning labels on their packages. Additionally, cigarette packages must display graphic images of what lung cancer from tobacco does to the body. Therefore, as the population grows more health conscious, cigarette smoking may eventually cease.
Factors That Led To The Popularity Of Marijuana
To understand why marijuana is popular, we must go back in time. Not only was marijuana use frowned upon, but it was also criminalized. The 1937 Marijuana Tax Act was a federal law that outlawed marijuana nationwide.
The Act placed an excise tax on selling, possessing, or transferring all hemp products. Hemp was required for industrial purposes, especially during the World Wars. Therefore, any other use of marijuana products outside the industrial application was a crime.
Despite the criminal connotations and threat of legal action, people still smoked marijuana. Therefore, the government changed tactics by repealing the Marijuana Tax Act. Its replacement was the Controlled Substances Act of 1970. President Nixon signed it into law as part of the government’s war on drug use.
Therefore, marijuana became a Schedule I drug alongside heroin and ecstasy. Additionally, groups such as D.A.R.E. labeled marijuana as a gateway drug, introducing young adults to other addictions.
There were ongoing efforts to make marijuana more accepted through legalization. For example, the National Commission on Marijuana and Drug Abuse, aka the Shafer Commission, released a report that largely supported the need to lessen the reins on marijuana. However, the lack of legalization meant marijuana remained a Schedule I drug.
A significant change came through the Compassionate Use Act of 1996. The Act made California the first state to legalize marijuana use for medical purposes. People with severe or chronic illnesses rejoiced as cannabis use gave them pain relief. Soon after, 29 states, including Washington D.C., made it legal to use marijuana products for its medicinal benefits.
After the 2018 Farm Bill, more states softened their stand on marijuana consumption when they agreed to legalize recreational marijuana. In 2019, 12 states and Washington D.C. legalized marijuana use for recreational purposes.
While some states haven’t formalized their laws to allow for the recreational use of marijuana, it’s only a matter of time.In Fact, today the majority of Americans chooses the best Delta-8 pre-rolls & hemp cigarettes since vaping is better than smoking.
Dual Purpose Smoking
Smoking cannabis presents more benefits than what cigarette smokers gain. In the past, it was cool for a while to smoke cigarettes, giving you that nicotine hit. However, as smoking buds became more acceptable, people realized additional benefits.
For example, marijuana relieves pain, helps you relax, is fun, and makes you more social. More on those later. Therefore, marijuana outshone cigarettes by being more potent while increasing social appeal. Few people can’t stand cigarette smokers’ tobacco smell, while marijuana hardly leaves such a repulsive scent.
Demystification of Marijuana
Young people like to fit in, as is the norm in society. Therefore, if a group is experimenting with marijuana, chances are others looking to join will too. In addition, young adults are more informed about marijuana. Therefore, the scare tactics of vilifying marijuana no longer work.
People see marijuana as a good substance that won’t get them addicted to heroin. Granted, marijuana smokers may find it to be a gateway drug under the right circumstances and mental state. However, young adults believe they are in control of themselves and won’t begin abusing hard drugs because of marijuana smoking.
Remember, present laws have made marijuana readily available in some states and available without too much hassle in the rest. From best CBD vape cartridges to Delta-10 vapes, today you easily find numerous kinds of vapes and cigarettes in the market. Whether for medical or recreational purposes, youth have no trouble finding and smoking pot.
For example, in college settings, they don’t even have to go shopping for marijuana. All they need to do is show up at a party or a friend’s room, and soon they are smoking pot.
Positive Health Effects Of Smoking Marijuana
Cannabis smoking is one of the ways to access the medicinal and recreational benefits of cannabis. Other ways include ingestion and topical application. However, inhalation is the fastest way to access those benefits and increase your dopamine levels. The compounds in cannabis use travel fast through your lungs into your bloodstream. Here are the health benefits:
Marijuana was used for pain management long before any scientific evidence was presented. Records of ancient times reveal this use, with modern scientific research only confirming the fact.
Compounds in the cannabis plant alter the pain receptors in the brain, thus sparing you with the pain sensation. Such use was the primary motivator for the government to agree to pass laws that legalized medical marijuana.
Marijuana is presently used to manage chronic pain from conditions like arthritis, cancer, migraines, endometriosis, etc. Using marijuana is better than relying on pharmaceutical pain relievers, which have side effects and tolerance issues.
Smoking pot and getting high is the perfect antidote to stress for most people. The euphoria that accompanies marijuana smoking is probably what most people seek from cannabis.
The compound T.H.C. is what causes such psychoactive reactions in smokers. Therefore, you can relax and unwind by getting high if you’re feeling stressed after a particularly tough day. Alternatively, CBD in cannabis will help calm you down. Studies show that CBD helps improve your sleep quality. Better sleep equates to stress relief.
Improved Lung Capacity
Unlike the harmful effects of smoking common cigarettes, marijuana positively impacts your lungs. Smoking weed helps increase your lung capacity, leading to better lung health.
Muscle Tension Relief
Another benefit of the T.H.C. in marijuana is as a muscle relaxant. By relaxing your muscles, you’re able to stretch them well. Those who participate in muscle-toning exercises such as yoga classes would greatly benefit from cannabis smoking.
Besides them, you can rely on marijuana to give you relief from stiff muscles and joints. For example, if you have knots in your back or shoulders, you’ll sleep better once you smoke marijuana.
Inflammation is a terrible condition in the human body. Additionally, it makes the pain feel worse. Inflammation is associated with rheumatoid arthritis, headaches, bowel complications, Alzheimer’s, and heart disease. The combination of T.H.C., CBD, and terpenes contain anti-inflammation properties.
Therefore, cannabis use helps reduce inflammation, thus relieving you of pain and discomfort. Furthermore, reliance on marijuana for anti-inflammation is better than on steroids. The latter pharmaceutical solution has side effects such as muscle weakness and immune system deficiency.
Enhanced Rest And Recovery
When you regularly smoke marijuana, you’ll have better rest and recovery sessions from its sedative effect. The CBD in cannabis works on the endocannabinoid system to promote better balance in your body. Therefore, you’ll feel rested and recover much faster. This way, you’ll have an easier time recuperating and even sleeping.
Nausea And Vomiting Management After Chemotherapy
The initial belief that marijuana helped heal the body from cancer was misleading. Instead, you’ll access other benefits when you smoke marijuana. Chemotherapy is an important step in cancer treatment, but it adversely affects the body. Besides making you feel weak and lose your appetite, it causes nausea and vomiting.
Marijuana helps relieve you of nausea and vomiting, thus improving your situation significantly. This way, you’ll go through your chemotherapy sessions better and handle the recovery process better. Reduced vomiting is especially beneficial since retaining your food is important in strength recovery.
While most people reported feeling euphoric after they smoked marijuana, others didn’t. Instead, they reported feeling a sense of calmness. Generally, one can expect a spectrum of feelings and mental states when one smokes cannabis.
At some point, you’re likely to experience increased mindfulness and be in the moment. The feeling isn’t necessarily sitting still and breathing deeply. It is the increased perception of whatever activity you’re engaged in.
An important benefit of marijuana is increased appetite, which is critical for those with ailments that derail their appetite. Besides inducing munchies, cannabis helps alleviate the pain and discomfort of most ailments. This way, you’ll be comfortable enough to tolerate thoughts of eating. Additionally, you’ll retain most of what you eat, thus leading to increased demand from your body.
What Are The Negative Effects of Smoking Weed?
Cannabis smoking can have harmful effects, depending on several factors. Examples of health risks include the quality of marijuana, frequency of use, and reasons for smoking.
Increased Respiratory Complications
Regular cannabis smoking can cause chronic bronchitis and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. This is according to the American Lung Association. In addition, marijuana users can damage the cell linings of their large airways.
You’ll see this as increased phlegm production, constant coughing, wheezing, and acute bronchitis. Some people develop large air bubbles in their lungs, even between their lungs and chest cavity. Remember, smoke remains a foreign substance in the body and whose increased consumption is bound to have adverse effects.
Low Infant Birth Weight
Pregnant mothers who use cannabis increase the chance of low infant birth weight by 50%. This outcome leads to more time in the neonatal intensive care units and future health complications for the baby, like delayed brain development.
Furthermore, the baby will experience attention deficit disorder, especially during infancy. Therefore, a regular cannabis smoker should refrain from this habit during pregnancy and nursing.
Schizophrenia And Other Mental Health Complications
There is a risk of developing schizophrenia from constant cannabis smoking. Schizophrenia is a mental illness that hampers your thought process, decision-making, and emotion management. You may also experience impaired memory.
While many factors are responsible for causing this condition, foreign substances like marijuana are also partly to blame. Studies indicate that young people constantly abusing marijuana are susceptible to developing schizophrenia.
The effects of marijuana in relation to schizophrenia are tied to psychosis. Psychosis is when your thoughts are jumbled up, making distinguishing reality from fiction impossible. This interference with your neural activity is dangerous.
Some daily cannabis users experience such impaired cognitive function, which can escalate to full-blown schizophrenia. If you have undiagnosed schizophrenia, smoking buds could worsen the situation, leading to psychotic episodes. This is when you’ll need confinement in a mental institution under medication and monitoring.
How To Smoke Marijuana Safely And Responsibly?
The drawbacks to cannabis smoking are only possible if you use the product irresponsibly and dangerously. Let us look at some important considerations and the right ways to do it:
Get Marijuana From Legal Retailers
The lab testing requirement is one of the main benefits of legalizing cannabis for medical and recreational purposes. Therefore, retailers and manufacturers must ensure their marijuana products are free of harmful substances. Additionally, they are known business entities with a reputation to uphold, further increasing the motivation to sell quality marijuana.
Lab testing lets one know the CBD and T.H.C. concentration in each marijuana product. Since T.H.C. has mind-altering properties, such knowledge ensures you smoke only what you can handle. This way, you’ll suffer less detrimental effects from marijuana use.
Since inhaling cannabis compounds is the fastest way to experience their effects, you must be careful while smoking. First, pace yourself to ensure you don’t over-indulge. Besides the potential for adverse effects on your health, getting too high too fast could cause social embarrassment. While impaired, you’re likely to act in ways you otherwise wouldn’t.
Secondly, avoid overdependence on marijuana. Remember that it acts as a stimulant in your quest to access its many positive benefits. Overstimulating your body is not healthy and could lead to dependence.
For example, avoid using marijuana as your way of inducing quality sleep. While it may come in handy, ensure you practice proper sleep hygiene. This way, marijuana will be an enhancement, not the solution.
Similarly, moderation applies to social smoking and peer pressure. For mental health cases, seek professional help instead of using marijuana as your lasting solution.
Know When To Stop
Avoid developing a tolerance for marijuana. The first sign you need to review your smoking habit is if you need more to feel the same effects. Building a tolerance is never a good thing, regardless of the substance in question. While marijuana contains CBD, which helps in managing addiction, other compounds in marijuana don’t act the same way.
A timely realization that you’re developing a tolerance helps you successfully handle withdrawal symptoms. Those symptoms are similar to what cigarette smoking elicits, such as anxiety, irritability, poor appetite, and a craving for cannabis.
The best approach is to take a 48-hour break between smoking sessions to ensure no chance of tolerance developing. Remember, cannabis is most effective when your body is sensitive to it. Taking more only leads to marginal returns and the risk of tolerance building.
Admit When It’s A Problem
Peer pressure, social anxiety, and other mental conditions may prevent you from admitting you’re abusing marijuana. However, you need to find the courage to admit when you have a marijuana problem. There are plenty of addiction treatment solutions to help handle marijuana dependence and marijuana addiction problems. You only need access to them before it’s too late.
While it may be uncomfortable to admit the problem, your health depends on your decision and subsequent action. Therefore, take time to understand how your body responds to each smoking session. Note how much marijuana you need to smoke to attain the desired effects, especially any increments.
Choose A Safe Consumption Method
This solution applies to those who may have or are susceptible to contracting respiratory complications. While smoking is the fastest method of accessing the benefits of marijuana, it is not for everyone. As such, individuals with respiratory conditions like Asthma should consider another channel like edibles.
Observe Smoking Hygiene
There are several ways of smoking cannabis, including joints, bongs, and pipes. While rolling joints are the least elaborate smoking option, you still need to keep it clean. Therefore, use the right rolling paper and keep the rolling surface clean.
Additionally, ensure the other smoking accessories are constantly clean. Wash your bongs and pipes regularly, and store them well. Furthermore, avoid sharing joints and mouthpieces. You could be sharing with an H.I.V. positive person, and such reckless sharing endangers your health.
Keep An Open Mind
Most first-time cannabis users are under the impression that they’ll get high and experience something profound and fantastical. What they fail to realize is that reactions to marijuana are on a spectrum.
How you feel largely depends on your particular reaction to cannabis compounds, mental state, environment, and other factors. Therefore, smoking some more when you don’t instantly feel your version of a high may put you in danger. Instead, give the cannabis time and try later in a different setting, observing your reaction.
Observe The Local Guidelines
More states are legalizing marijuana use for recreational purposes. However, you shouldn’t assume that it’s okay to indulge anywhere. Therefore, check to ensure that your smoking habit is not infringing on any laws. The last thing you want is legal troubles when chasing that high or seeking relief.
Conclusion: Why People Are preferring Marijauna Over Cigarettes?
The preference for smoking marijuana over the need to smoke cigarettes proves that more people realize the detrimental effects of tobacco. Additionally, the demystification of cannabis after years of stigmatization and prohibitive legislation has created more fans of cannabis products.
It is no surprise that the youth and adults younger than the middle-aged age group dominate the smoking demographic. These individuals have witnessed how cigarette use destroys the lives of their loved ones. They find pot to be the safer alternative.
While there are many medicinal and recreational benefits of marijuana, there are also drawbacks to smoking. This article shares information on those benefits and the potential drawbacks.
Most drawbacks result from overindulgence, poor quality marijuana and smoking accessories, and poor smoking hygiene. Consequently, this article discusses marijuana smoking best practices to help you access its benefits and avoid potential harmful effects. It also emphasizes the need for addiction treatment before it’s too late.
In the end, marijuana’s popularity should lead more people to responsibly and safely consume the product. The legislation has set the stage for such a favorable environment. As traditional cigarettes and cigarette use decline in popularity and marijuana takes over, do your part in ensuring safe and responsible consumption.