What Hemp Products are Used as Drugs?

CBD is a chemical component of the plant Cannabis sativa, more commonly known as marijuana. For centuries, this vegetation has been cultivated to produce useful products, such as morphine drops from the opium poppy, cocaine from the coca plant, and hemp products from the cannabis plant. However, these plants are also among nature's most addictive and potentially deadly vegetation. This article provides an overview of these “three great addictive plants”.

Marijuana is derived from a plant called hemp, scientifically known as Cannabis sativa. The main active ingredient in marijuana is THC (short for delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol), which is found in the leaves and flowering parts of the marijuana plant. Hashish is a substance extracted from the upper part of female marijuana plants and contains the highest amount of THC. Cannabis is by far the most cultivated illicit drug, trafficked and abused.

Half of all drug seizures worldwide are related to cannabis, with a global geographical distribution that covers virtually every country in the world. Around 147 million people, 2.5% of the world's population, use cannabis (annual prevalence), compared to 0.2% who use cocaine and 0.2% use opiates. In this decade, cannabis abuse has grown more rapidly than the abuse of cocaine and opiates, particularly in developed countries in North America, Western Europe and Australia. Cannabis has been increasingly linked to youth culture and the starting age is often lower than that of other drugs.

An analysis of cannabis markets shows that low prices coincide with high levels of abuse and vice versa. Cannabis appears to be not elastic in terms of prices in the short term, but rather elastic in the long term. While the number of cannabis users is greater than that of opioid and cocaine users, the lower prices of cannabis mean that, in economic terms, the cannabis market is much smaller than the market for opiates or cocaine. Although marijuana and hemp products are derived from cannabis plants, they contain different levels of THC. For several years, synthetic cannabinoid blends have been easy to buy at drug paraphernalia stores, novelty stores, gas stations and on the Internet. An overdose occurs when a person consumes too much medication and has a dangerous reaction that causes severe and harmful symptoms or death. Interestingly, the DEA classifies marijuana as a Schedule I drug because it has no proven medical application and users can abuse the drug.

On the other hand, a negative drug test indicates that the amount of THC or THC-COOH is below the limit value. Because of this similarity, synthetic cannabinoids are sometimes misleadingly referred to as synthetic marijuana (or fake herb) and are often marketed as legal and safe alternatives to that drug. GW Pharma is an exception and its drug development platform focuses on compounds derived from marijuana. Marinol and Cesamet are listed as Schedule III and Schedule II drugs respectively, meaning that the FDA recognizes their clinical benefits and their potential for abuse is believed to be lower. The person requesting the drug test may request that CBD be added to the list of substances being tested. Read on to learn how to avoid a positive drug test result, what to look for in CBD products, and more.

Tasha Falsetti
Tasha Falsetti

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