Consuming cannabinoids does not negatively change the structure of the brain's gray matter or white matter, according to findings in new study. Study Finds Cannabinoid Use Not Associated with Adverse Changes in Brain Study: Cannabinoids Soothe Psoriasis, Eczema, and Other Skin Diseases. Cannabis Use Not Associated with Negative Changes in Brain Structure, Study Finds A study coming from the University of Colorado, Boulder, and the found cannabis was not linked to adverse changes in brain structure.
with Structure Changes Not Brain in Cannabinoid Associated Adverse Finds Study Use
They interact with our natural systems and have shown therapeutic promise for a wide array of conditions. A major component of the central nervous system, gray matter serves to process information in the brain.
White matter, found in the deeper tissues of the brain, is composed of bundles of myelinated axons that connect different parts of gray matter to each other. The researchers observed no negative structural measures in adolescents and adults that had consumed cannabinoids. Cannabinoid use had no adverse impact on grey or white matter volume. A study published in The Journal of Neuroscience also used imaging data to examine the effects of cannabinoids on brain structure.
Those investigators also found cannabinoids to not be linked to adverse changes in the brain. In the new study, the researchers did find chronic alcohol use to adversely affect brain structure.
Alcohol was linked to lower gray matter volume and white matter in adults and lower gray matter volume in adolescents. This latest study was published earlier this month in the peer-reviewed scientific journal, Addiction. Learn more about cannabinoids and what research has so far discovered about their therapeutic properties by visiting our education page.
However, a large study that followed cannabis users over nearly four decades found that there are limits to the ability of the brain to recover in those who begin using during early adolescence. Although cognition was improved in long-term cannabis users after 12 months of abstinence, cognitive impairments did persist, particularly in those who began using cannabis early. Surprisingly, no studies to date have investigated whether the persistent effects of heavy cannabis use on brain structure can also recover with abstinence.
Stimulating brain plasticity is a major interest to neuroscientists. Some of the interventions to induce plasticity may facilitate the recovery from heavy cannabis use. Exercise is well established in promoting brain health , including the growth and development of neurons. It is possible that reversing cannabis-related harm through abstinence could be augmented with interventions such as exercise. More research is required before such an idea could bare any practical significance.
Cannabis contains a wide variety of psychoactive substances. Police seizures indicate there has been a sharp rise in the level of THC relative to CBD in smoked cannabis in recent decades. This could be due to a number of factors such as changes in the way people are growing the plant, using the different parts of the plant, or how they are preparing it for use. Nor do we know the extent to which these effects can be mitigated by CBD alone. The creation of a well-regulated cannabis market, as has occurred in Colorado, may give researchers access to reliable information about the chemical composition of the cannabis that an individual is consuming.
This will make it possible to directly investigate whether CBD has a role to play in limiting the damage or even aiding recovery from the cannabis-related harm to the brain from heavy use. Establishing the long-term impact of cannabis on the brain is a research priority for neuroscientists. Answers are needed to largely untouched questions such as whether any potential harm could be reversed through exercise or other interventions and whether increasing the concentration of CBD can limit the negative impact caused by cannabis high in THC.
The legislative changes poised to increase the availability of cannabis are outpacing our understanding of the impact that the drug has on the brain. Without addressing these shortfalls in our knowledge, a fully informed debate about the likely consequences of increased cannabis use, whether it be for medical or recreational use, will not be possible. Should we be worried about indoor air pollution? Offences against the person?
The poetics of retreat: Meditation and space at the shrine in Mahan — York, York. Available editions United Kingdom. Heavy cannabis use is consistently associated with poorer attention and memory, and increased rates of metal health problems. How does it affect the developing brain? Shutterstock However, there are a range of factors that can influence cognition, mental health and brain structure. Are the impairments reversible? Marijuana Cannabis Medical cannabis Medical marijuana Medicinal cannabis Marijuana legalization tetrahydocannabinol marijuana effects.
We produce knowledge-based, ethical journalism. Please donate and help us thrive.
Cannabinoids are easier on the brain than booze, study finds
Find articles by Sina Aslan However, to date, these brain changes as a result of marijuana use structural changes associated with marijuana use have not been Because THC binds to cannabinoid 1 (CB1) receptors in the brain, emergent studies have demonstrated a link between brain structure. However, research in humans does not show common findings across studies regarding We provide evidence that regular cannabis use is associated with gray matter The study by Zalesky et al () shows a linear correlation between In our study, we investigate the precise nature of structural changes induced by. Nonetheless, anecdotal evidence suggests that certain forms of marijuana, namely . used cannabis as a form of self-medication did not find this to be the case. A recent review compiled studies on changes in cognition, brain structure and brain Regular cannabis use during adolescence is also associated with adverse.