How does marijuana affect the brain?

The human brain is a complex organ that is responsible for other parts of the body and its ability to do things.  Marijuana affects the brain in the following areas:

  • 1. Cerebral Cortex which plays a role in memory, thinking, perceptual awareness and consciousness
  • 2. Hypothalamus which governs metabolic processes such as appetite
  • 3. Amygdala which plays a role in emotions
  • 4. Hippocampus which is key to memory storage and recall
  • 5. Basal Ganglia which governs motor skills and learning
  • 6. Cerebellum which governs coordination and muscle control
  • 7. Brain Stem which controls many basic functions including arousing the vomiting reflex, blood pressure, heart rate and plays a role in pain sensation, muscle tone and movement

Because marijuana plays a great role in storing, retaining and recalling memories it is proven that long term use of marijuana lowers an individual's IQ by 8 points.


11 Signs and Symptoms of Substance Use Disorder

  1. Using more of the substance than originally planned
  2. Being unable to stop using the substance
  3. Experiencing relationship problems based on substance use
  4. Spending large amounts of time seeking a substance, using the substance, or recovering from use
  5. Reducing participation in favorite activities in favor of substance use
  6. Being unable to keep up with daily responsibilities due to substance use
  7. Craving the substance 
  8. Continuing to use the substance despite negative health effects
  9. Regularly using the substance in dangerous situations (while driving or operating machinery)
  10. Developing tolerance for the substance, as described above
  11. Experiencing withdrawal symptoms when use is stopped

Is marijuana addicting?