Marijuana is legal in Washington State for adults 21 and over, but it does pose potential health risks. The safety of marijuana, or cannabis, has not been established, and more research is still needed. However, the research that has been done shows that marijuana can have both short-term and long-term effects on health. Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the psychoactive chemical in marijuana. Many marijuana products today have much higher THC levels than in the past.

Short-term effects of marijuana:

  • Drowsiness
  • Loss of inhibitions
  • Decreased coordination
  • Anxiety and/or paranoia
  • Increased appetite

Long-term effects of marijuana:

  • Addiction (especially in youth)
  • Impact on brain development (especially in youth), which may include reduced cognitive abilities, attention, and memory
  • Breathing problems – Marijuana smoke has many of the same chemicals as cigarette smoke, and can irritate the lungs and can cause respiratory issues
  • Increased heart rate

For more information about the health effects of Cannabis:
Know This About Cannabis
Start Talking About Cannabis