BEACON TRANSCRIPT – Although the topic is still under a lot of debate, it would seem that more and more studies emerge in order to refute the latest fad in marijuana-bashing theories according to which pot users can experience mood swings, depression and even schizophrenia. Marijuana does not cause mood swings and depression according to the latest research conducted by a team of psychiatrists.
Like any other substance used for a long time, marijuana can also cause dependence. But this is not what the study was meant to debunk. In fact, the team of psychiatrists in charge of this project wanted to prove once and for all that marijuana does not cause depression, anxiety, mood swings or schizophrenia.
In order to achieve their goal, the medical researchers used the health data collected by the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions. Approximately 35.000 adults participated in this national survey.
The next step was to determine the prevalence of marijuana users during 2001 and 2002, a parameter which they later cross-referenced with the number of mental cases registered between 2004 and 2005.
Naturally, the team had to take precautions in order to ensure that the results aren’t botched. After taking into account all possible factors such as medical history, family history and socio-demographic factors. In the end, the team has discovered that there is nothing linking marijuana use to mood swings or depression.
However, the team declared that we shouldn’t take the study’s results for granted. Although they were unable to discover a direct connection between marijuana use and mental disorders, they did find something not entirely unexpected.
According to Mark Olfson, the lead author of the study, recurrent use of marijuana can, in time, lead to the use of other substances such as alcohol, tobacco or more potent drugs. In an official email, the lead author concluded that this discovery raises another concern regarding alcohol. He stated that if cannabis abuse or dependence can cause the patient to turn his attention towards other substances, so can alcohol.
A team of scientists from the Columbia University declared that marijuana does not cause mood swings or depression. The study did not manage to address previous theories regarding the link between marijuana abuse and schizophrenia.
But, according to Keith Humphreys, from Stanford University, who was not involved in the study, the facts in the latter case are still vague and under a lot of heavy debate.
Does marijuana cause mood swings, depression or anxiety? Certainly not, according to the study performed by the Columbia University. However, the study does voice a concern in the area of addiction and misuse.