Why do you support the legalization of marijuana

Blog Archive

Tuesday, 6 May 2008

Does Marijuana Cause Depression

One of the many side effects of marijuana use often listed by those opposed to marijuana legalization is depression. This is based on numerous studies showing that an abnormally high number of marijuana users are depressed. Another study trying to demonstrate if the reason for this was that depressed people are prone to marijuana use or if marijuana induces depression studied twins and found that in fraternal twins marijuana dependent counterparts are considerably more likely to be depressed then identical, but even in identical twins the results demonstrate that the marijuana dependent counterpart is much more likely to be depressed then the sober counterpart. This seems to indicate there is indeed a correlation between depression and marijuana. I am not going to deny the link the evidence does appear overwhelming. Marijuana increases the risk of depression.

On the flip side other studies have demonstrated that marijuana is a very effective anti-depressant. The reason for this is that the cannabinoids such as THC in marijuana are strikingly similar to endo-cannabinoids the brain produces during times of stress and thus stimulate serotonin production. Serotonin is the chemical the brain uses to combat depression. I am not going to deny the evidence that marijuana is an effective anti-depressant.

Now you might be asking yourself how I can believe that marijuana is a great anti-depressant and yet causes depression, the two seem mutually exclusive. They are not however, and the key lies in the dosage. A large dose and the depression is amplified, in small doses depression is combated.

I am not alone in my assessment of this, in a recent conversation with my own family doctor about my own battle with depression she stated exactly this. Her comment was that frequent users of marijuana (several times a week) often become depressed, while occasional users (no more then two times a week, her definitions of frequent and occasional users not mine) were rarely depressed, or at least statistically lower then a control group.

So it seems that once again logic prevails, and abuse of marijuana leads to negative side effects, while casual use is either beneficial or neutral.


  1. I used to have an extremely large dose once a month with my friends.

    But now i have depression from other things in my life. I continued with this habit and the anxiety and depression was sometimes worse a few days later.

    I'm just looking to find a way, just 30 minutes of relief is more than i could ever ask for.

    But how do you measure a 'small dose'? I want to try this but im too afraid i'll have too much :P.

    Thanks for the article.


  2. Determining the proper dose is indeed difficult, I am not a doctor and thus cannot really advise you on this. Self dosing is rarely successful, ideally you would discuss dosage with your doctor, yet another reason prohibition is a failure.

    What I would do is start simple a small joint with maybe a 1/4 of an gram of green in it and see if that helps. But remember THC stays in your system for quite some time so if you do a joint a day every day the effects can be cumulative. Caution is always advised when experimenting with drugs without doctors advise. If you live in an area where medicinal marijuana is legal then you could possibly discuss it with your doctor.

  3. Pot alleviates depression. Saying it causes it, is like saying sleeping aids cause insomnia... people take sleeping aids because they already can't sleep so of course they can't sleep without them after they start taking them but it's no different than before they started taking them. People who use pot to alleviate depression get depressed when the effects wear off, but they were already depressed to begin with. And pot doesn't cause depressed people to become suicidal and violent like the approved antidepressants do.

  4. Pot can act as an antidepressant, however if you use it too much the evidence clearly points to it being a depressant as well. Your sleeping pill analogy is an apt one, if you use sleeping pills to much you can indeed become dependant on them in order to get sleep, however some can also have an opposite effect when the dosage is wrong.

    I will agree with you, however about the violent and suicidal tendencies. There is zero evidence that pot causes either of these. However depression does, pot can cause depression if abused, so, in a sense pot can lead to suicidal though I think its a stretch to say such a thing.

    And again, pot only causes depression when the dose is high and the use is constant.



If Marijuana became legalized would you support its taxation?

Do you think our economy can be saved by legalizing marijuana

What do you think the Origins of the slang term 420 is

Would you vote for a politician solely on their stance on Marijuana?

What is your prefered method of using pot? (assuming price is no issue)

If marijuana were legal would you grow your own or buy from a store?

If you use marijuana do your family members no

Do you consider yourself a Pot Head

How often do you use marijuana?