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Marijuana and Teenage Psychosis David Ruffino Student Nurse. PPC Term Five.

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Presentation on theme: "Marijuana and Teenage Psychosis David Ruffino Student Nurse. PPC Term Five."— Presentation transcript:

1 Marijuana and Teenage Psychosis David Ruffino Student Nurse. PPC Term Five

2 Observations: Working at Psychiatric Institutions I’ve had the opportunity to read the charts of quite a few patients. One thing that I found is that in those with psychosis, there was always a former use of Marijuana in their profiles. I just had to investigate.

3 What is Marijuana? Marijuana refers to the dried leaves, flowers, stems, and seeds from the hemp plant Cannabis sativa, which contains the psychoactive (mind-altering) chemical delta- 9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), as well as other related compounds. This plant material can also be concentrated in a resin called hashish or a sticky black liquid called hash oil.

4 Marijuana is a counterfeit THC's chemical structure is similar to the brain chemical anandamide. Similarity in structure allows drugs to be recognized by the body and to alter normal brain communication

5 Potency Has Increased

6 How Does Marijuana Affect the Brain? When marijuana is smoked, THC rapidly passes from the lungs into the bloodstream, which carries the chemical to the brain and other organs throughout the body. It is absorbed more slowly when ingested in food or drink.

7 How Does Marijuana Affect the Brain? THC acts on specific molecular targets on brain cells, called cannabinoid receptors. These receptors are ordinarily activated by chemicals similar to THC that naturally occur in the body. This system plays an important role in normal brain development and function.

8 How Does Marijuana Affect the Brain? The highest density of cannabinoid receptors is found in parts of the brain that influence pleasure, memory, thinking, concentration, sensory and time perception, and coordinated movement. Note that all of these things are affected with psychosis.

9 Marijuana and decreased I.Q. And a large long-term study in New Zealand showed that people who began smoking marijuana heavily in their teens lost an average of 8 points in IQ between age 13 and age 38. Importantly, the lost cognitive abilities were not fully restored in those who quit smoking marijuana as adults.

10 Marijuana And Decreased I.Q.

11 How Does Marijuana Affect the Brain? Marijuana overactivates the endocannabinoid system, causing the “high” and other effects that users experience. These effects include altered perceptions and mood, impaired coordination, difficulty with thinking and problem solving, and disrupted learning and memory.

12 When Does Schizophrenia Start And Who Gets It? Schizophrenia affects men and women equally. It occurs at similar rates in all ethnic groups around the world. Symptoms such as hallucinations and delusions usually start between ages 16 and 30. Men tend to experience symptoms a little earlier than women. Most of the time, people do not get schizophrenia after age 45.

13 Marijuana, Teenage Leading Illicit Drug Marijuana is the leading “gateway” drug for teens 12 – 17 years of age. Schizophrenia manifests about the same time

14 Marijuana and Schizophrenia Short of full-blown schizophrenia, many other persistent effects have been observed in heavy (defined as weekly or more often) pubertal users, including working memory deficits, reduced attention, reduced processing speed, anhedonia, abnormal social behavior, susceptibility to mood and anxiety disorders, and greater likelihood of dependence.

15 Marijuana and Schizophrenia Kuepper et al., posit that ongoing cannabis use may increase psychotic disorder risk by making transient psychotic experiences in adolescent users persist to the point of becoming permanent.

16 Marijuana Contributes to Other Disorders Adolescent cannabis use is also associated with depressive and anxiety disorders that emerge later in life. In a cohort of Australian girls followed up for 7 years from the ages of 14 to 15 years, 60% had used cannabis by the end of the study and 7% were daily users. Patton et al observed a dose-related risk of eventual depression and anxiety.

17 Disorders Associated with Marijuana Dependence

18 Sources: National Institute on Drug Abuse - National Institute For Mental Health: The Mayo Clinic: 6196(11)00021-8/fulltext#sec3 6196(11)00021-8/fulltext#sec3

19 Sources for Images: Slide 04: Slide 05: Slide 10: Slide 14: Slide 18:

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