Schizophrenia and Marijuana

An increasing number of scientific studies conducted in recent years have found a significant relationship between marijuana use and schizophrenia, with the use of marijuana found to about double an individual's risk of developing the illness. But does marijuana use actually cause schizophrenia? Scientific studies have yet to establish a causal relationship, leaving this a question open for debate.

What do we know?

Studies have found connections between THC (marijuana's primary psychoactive ingredient) and brain abnormalities that lead to symptoms seen in schizophrenia, suggesting that marijuana use could possibly trigger or exacerbate the illness. Other studies have consistently found that young people who regularly use marijuana increase their risk of developing schizophrenia and experience an earlier onset of the illness than they general population.

What do we think?

Many experts believe that marijuana use has the potential to trigger schizophrenia in people who already have a genetic vulnerability to the disease. There is not a lot of evidence to suggest that people with no predisposition to schizophrenia will develop the illness due to cannabis use (although it should be pointed out that it isn't always possible for people who are vulnerable to schizophrenia to be aware of that fact).

The Bottom Line

Marijuana is the most widely used drug among schizophrenics, but it isn't clear whether people begin using marijuana as a way to cope with schizophrenia symptoms, or develop schizophrenia symptoms as a result of marijuana use. The only thing that can be said for sure is that some relationship exists. So if you're looking to decrease your chances of developing schizophrenia, avoiding marijuana couldn't hurt.

Related Articles

Drug Induced Schizophrenia

More Articles

Creatine is a type of acid naturally manufactured by our liver, pancreas and kidneys. One of its primary roles in the body is to provide energy...

There are two commonly used sets of criteria for diagnosing schizophrenia and other mental health disorders: the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual...

There are a number of talented musicians who have suffered from schizophrenia at some point in...

People in the prodromal phase of schizophrenic experience what can be called...

The term "schizophrenic break" refers to an episode of acute psychosis in someone with...

More Articles

More Articles

Creatine is a type of acid naturally manufactured by our liver, pancreas and kidneys. One of its primary roles in the body is to provide energy...

There are two commonly used sets of criteria for diagnosing schizophrenia and other mental health disorders: the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual...

There are a number of talented musicians who have suffered from schizophrenia at some point in...

People in the prodromal phase of schizophrenic experience what can be called...

The term "schizophrenic break" refers to an episode of acute psychosis in someone with...

Treating schizophrenia with medication often yields positive results. Nowadays, there are many...

Understanding the pathophysiology of schizophrenia (or, in other words, the physiological...

Scientists have been studying schizophrenia for a long time, trying to determine what...

An estimated 30% of people with schizophrenia have refractory schizophrenia, which means their...

While most people can’t fathom purposely hurting themselves, self-injury is not uncommon with certain types of psychiatric disorders. Although it...

Although schizophrenia goes back several thousand years, this most serious of psychiatric disorders was not officially coined “schizophrenia”...

The neurotransmitter serotonin is known to influence a number of important brain functions, including perception, mood, sleep, appetite, cognition...

There are a number of different research methods used in psychology, but one of the most interesting to the layperson is the case study. Case...

The question of whether people with schizophrenia know they are ill is actually quite...

No one knows exactly what causes schizophrenia, and there are a number of...