Another scientific research study has been conducted on the effects that cannabis might have on developing young brains, and the results further suggests that the age-old stigma that ‘pot makes kids stupid’ could be complete and utter nonsense.
The author of this particular study analyzed data that was compiled from various others of its kind, which were done on teenage and young adults who used the plant heavily.
According to CNN, the main focus of the study was how cannabis might have impacted the participants’ executive functioning skills. The study was done by Assistant Professor of Psychiatry Cobb Scott, at the University of Pennsylvania.
“We basically showed that the largest effects—which was around a third of a standard deviation—was in the learning of new information and some aspects of executive functioning, memory and speed of processing,” Scott told CNN.
Scott went on to tell CNN that “this is the first study to be done specifically in adolescent and young adult samples.”
The most important variable in this particular study is that once the subjects stopping using cannabis for a period of 72 hours, there was no evidence of any kind of discernable difference between those who ingest the plant and those who don’t. Anyone who is experienced in consuming cannabis can probably tell you that their mental capacities do tend to be sharper when they haven’t consumed, opposed to when they have. This new study suggests that about three days after the high wears off, the cognitive function of a user could revert back to its original state.
“Some of the effects found in previous studies may be due to the residual effects of cannabis or potentially from withdrawal effects in heavy cannabis users,” Scott said.
What this means is that participants in earlier studies on the matter might have still felt the effects of the plant’s influence, which in turn could have distorted the analysis of how their brains functioned cognitively.
We reported on a similar study that was done on sets of twins back in 2016. One twin had used the plant medicine, and the other had not. The author of this study, Nicholas Jackson of the University of California, Los Angeles, found that the twin who used cannabis had no indication of a lower IQ than that of the twin who didn’t partake.
Again, this is not clear-cut proof that cannabis has no impact on the brain. But, it is yet another way to push back against the age-old prohibitionist rhetoric of the ‘stupid pothead’.