What is marijuana?
5 quick marijuana facts

What is marijuana? How is marijuana used? What are the negative effects of marijuana? How does marijuana work? What are the laws on marijuana?

You ve heard the words thrown around: marijuana , weed , dope , pot , green , and even though you know it s a drug, you re just not 100% sure what it is and how it works. You ve come to the right place! Below are five marijuana facts that will help you answer: what is marijuana, how does it work and what are the effects of marijuana?

What is marijuana?

Marijuana is a drug that comes from the cannabis plant. Even though a lot of people use the word marijuana when talking about cannabis in general, marijuana is actually just the dried flowers and leaves of the plant. Cannabis users might also use hashish which comes from the plant s resin (like a gum) or hash oil.cannabis-information-and-resources.jpg (1)

How is cannabis used?

Most people who use cannabis smoke it in a joint, which is like a cigarette, or in a bong, which is a water pipe that might have been bought at a shop or made at home from things like old soft drink or juice containers. A lot of people think bongs are less dangerous because the water makes the smoke seem less harsh, but actually all ways of smoking cannabis can increase the likelihood of respiratory diseases.

How does it work and what are the effects of weed?

Using weed makes you feel high because it has an ingredient called THC. The effects of weed are different for everyone some people might feel happy, talkative and less self-conscious than usual, while other people can feel sleepy, nauseous and uncoordinated or any combination of all of these effects. Some people may get really paranoid when they use cannabis, feeling really anxious, nervous or afraid.

What are the negative effects of weed?

If you keep using weed heavily, for long periods, you risk getting respiratory diseases, affecting your memory and feeling really unmotivated, which might affect your work, your social life and your family relationships.

What is the deal with cannabis laws in Australia?

It is important to remember that cannabis is illegal in Australia. Cannabis laws in Australia vary between each state and territory, with each state having their own ways of dealing with people found in possession of or growing cannabis. The only way to avoid them for sure is not to use cannabis. If you re thinking of trying cannabis, or you re being pressured, it can sometimes feel like everyone else is doing it but that s not true. In Australia, only one in ten people have used cannabis in the past year.

If you d like some more info on how cannabis can affect you, check out our other Marijuana Facts, our YouTube channel, follow us on Facebook, or take part in one of our competitions (with some good cash prizes up for grabs). If you think you or a friend might have a problem with cannabis and need help, check out our Get Help page or call the helpline on 1800 30 40 50. You can also get some more in-depth answers to all your cannabis questions on our factsheets page.

*Please note that the terms marijuana , cannabis , weed and pot are used interchangeably in these fast facts, and all refer to the illegal drug, cannabis, unless otherwise specified.