Pregnant women with depression are three times as likely to use cannabis than those who have no depressive symptoms. The prevalence of cannabis use was 25% in pregnant women with depression and perceived no risk from the substance.
Cannabis use in males appears to alter sperm before mating, increasing the risk of their offspring developing brain abnormalities in areas associated with mood, memory, learning, and reward.
Regular exposure to low-dose THC during pregnancy led to an 8% reduction of birth weight, and decreased brain and liver growth of more than 20% in rat models.
Marijuana use rates are increasing in college students in states where recreational use has been legalized. Following cannabis legalization, binge drinking rates between the cohort group fell significantly.
A naturally occurring molecule produced by the brain activates endocannabinoid receptors, protecting against stress by reducing anxiety-producing connections between the amygdala and the prefrontal cortex. The findings may help explain why people turn to marijuana when they feel anxious or stressed.
Cannabis use in those with depression has almost doubled since 2017, a new study reports.