The Liberal Democrats have said they will continue to support the legalisation of cannabis, according to the party’s new leader Sir Vince Cable.
Speaking to BBC Radio 1’s Newsbeat, Sir Cable said that it makes sense to “regulate and control the market” instead of letting a criminal element “control the mixing of substances”.
The Home Office have said there are no plans to relax the law on the Class B drug, with Theresa May telling the same programme the government’s plan…
Is all about recovery and helping people to come through this and see a better life
But what does prolonged exposure to cannabis do to a person?
A study by a team of researchers from the University of Lausanne in Switzerland, published in 2016, found that people who smoked marijuana on a daily basis for a long period of time had poorer verbal memory in their middle age, than others.
This occured when controlling for a number of other factors, such as age, education, other substance use and mental health issues.
The team found that the relationship between marijuana use and memory problems was fairly direct – that the more pot people smoked, the worse they performed in memory tests.
Although the difference wasn’t stark over five years – the more years for which you smoke daily the more you compound the issue.
However, few people reach these levels of exposure – of the 3,385 study subjects, only 311 had more than five marijuana years’ (if you smoke pot every day for a year) worth of exposure.
The upshot? Other cognitive abilities didn’t seem to be significantly affected by heavy cannabis use, such as ability to focus and problem solving speed.
Testimony from people who have decided to quit the drug has previously supported these findings.
Stuart Angel told news.com.au:
Even when I smoked, I always had a great long term memory.
But my short term memory has really suffered. When I was smoking, I would say something, and then get distracted. I couldn’t focus when I smoked, not even for 10 minutes. Now I can focus for much longer periods of time.
A reddit user also posted on the r/trees subreddit a lengthy post explaining his motives for quitting:
I’ve missed a lot of things because of it. Chief among these is my memory: often, when discussing a film with people, I’ve had to admit that I couldn’t really remember it because I was stoned when I watched it the first time. Often, when watching television with my girlfriend, I would ask, ‘Who the hell is this character?’ and she would reply, ‘That’s the protagonist. It’s the main character.’ Oops. I guess I was in my own world.
You are your memories, your past experiences, and an enormously high percentage of my memories were stoned. Thus, even when I wasn’t high, weed was affecting who I was, and who I could become.