A recent study carried out by LiveScience discussed the use of synthetic cannabinoids and their adverse reactions in adolescents compared to herbal cannabis.
More commonly known as Spice and K2, synthetic cannabinoids are a large group of chemicals that mimic the sensation of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive ingredient present in marijuana. The chemical is sprayed onto inert plant ingredients to produce a powerful substance. The chemical formulas are constantly altered to the point that the chemical is legal.
The detrimental effect of each encounter differs and the increasingly prevalent substances can be as much as 40 to 600 times more potent than THC due to inconsistent formula manufacturing.
The attractive labelling, ease of access and perceived legality of synthetic cannabinoids make them appealing to adolescents hence the widespread use amongst demographic.
The study found that adolescents who had used synthetic cannabinoids are more likely to engage in other substance abuse such as heroin, ecstasy, and alcohol in contrast to those who have only used herbal cannabis. Additionally, the physical behaviour of adolescents who use synthetic cannabinoid compared to herbal cannabis appeared more aggressive and violent.
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