Marijuana is an ancient drug that is still highly-prevalent and available today. When taken, it produces intense feelings of euphoria, relaxation and drowsiness which are desirable and can become quickly habit-forming. Users take the drug, which is derived from the dried leaves and flowers of the Cannabis sativa plant, by smoking these components and inhaling the intoxicants.
While the drug contains many psychoactive chemicals, the most prominent of those it contains is delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol or THC, and the amount of THC in the marijuana being used determines the intensity of the high a user will have. When users consume marijuana instead of smoking it, they can quickly increase the amounts of the intoxicants they receive, intensifying their high and the medical dangers associated with the drug.
The wide availability of the drug — increased by its legality in several states — make abuse a major problem, and while the drug does have legitimate medical uses, specifically to manage pain, it also can produce many unwanted and severe adverse side effects which can be devastating, especially taken with other drugs. Marijuana, widely available to school-age children, can also serve as a gateway drug. A marijuana dependency will always require medical intervention followed immediately by a comprehensive rehab program.