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Marijuana and Mental Health

Researching the Authors Who Conduct Cannabis Studies

This quest has all started from within while researching alternative ways to help with my struggles and mental ailments. As a child, being told I had an array of mental disorders, genetically passed down from one parent. The stigma of mental illness growing up allowed all my insecurities to pave the way. Not aware of the super-strength qualities I had inside, I spiraled down through nicotine and alcohol. Bouts with cannabis were very few in between those years as an adolescent. 

By the time I had given birth to my daughter, these mental issues had come out in droves. Postpartum is a bitch. Pills prescribed to me led to suicidal thoughts. What were dreams and feelings of despair had turned to complete darkness. I felt the only way out was through death. Feeling bad for my newborn daughter that I didn’t know how to bond with, I wanted a way out. Through desperation, an angel appeared in disguise. A friend of a friend offered a joint, and I was given my first puff with cannabis as an adult. Instantly I felt relief from the pain deep within. From there, this journey has started. Different paths started for similar in various reasons before me. I dedicate this to all those who will heal themselves with cannabis. I wonder how my father would be today living a society where the stigma of this plant wasn’t so negative. He was on 5+ mental medications when he finally hung himself due to not being able to find happiness within himself. 

From here, I will begin this quest to gain knowledge, and the best way I understand is though research and study. Diving into each piece and medical research that I felt related to this information, what I found was perplexed yet interesting. The first website that I chose to go to is the CDC. It is here. I discovered that they sourced a study called: The Substance Use and Mental Health Indicator. It was a research that completed in 2016; they source that as their data for updated information on mental health and drug abuse. Looking into the authors of the study was interesting as I was looking for professional opinions about cannabis and mental health. 

Five authors and one project officer, who are these people? Through intense research and study, I was able to locate these five authors and one project officer through various social media sites such as Linkedin. Here is what I was able to find on these people who concluded a whole study on various mental health issues and drug habits combined. 

Rebecca Ahrnsbrak is a statistician. She has worked with the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration since November 2014 out of Rockville, Maryland. Before starting with her current company, Rebecca was the National Oceanic and Atmosphere for about three years and two months. Then with the US Census Bureau, she was with them for three years and three months. Rebecca work as a statistician For all three companies listed. Currently, no colleges listed, only 13 courses. LinkedIn was my source. 

Jonaki Bose, who now goes by Jonaki Egenolf on Linkedln, is currently the chief marketing officer currently for Cloud Security & Compliance, Threat Stack. She has been with the company for two years and three months. At the time of this study in 2016, Jonaki was the Vice President of Global Marketing. Jonaki held the position for eight years, nine months. She graduated from Wellesley College with a BA in Political Science, Sociology 1993-1997. 

Sarra L. Hedden - I was able to find 55 different articles of varying mental health and different kinds of substance abuse. No LinkedIn, website indicating college or work history. Who is Sarra L. Hedden? 

Rachel N. Lipari is a senior scientist for the Defense Manpower Data Center. I was able to find some appearances by her on C-SPAN.org. Two of those appearances back into a thousand eight and 2004, she is on C-SPAN discussing sexual harassment survey. Looking into the company, I discovered it is a government site meant for data. 

Eunice Park-Lee is a researcher Affiliated with the CDC intervention, among other places. She graduated from Radcliffe College in 2017. She has a history concentrator and has two online books: Dementia Special Care Unit in Residential Care Communities. The United States, 2017:

The other people are mentioned as Authors too, Lauren D. Harris, and Manisha Sengupta. The other title is the use of Electronic Health Records in Residential Care Communities. One other author included; her name is Christine Caffey. 

The last person I had to look up is Peter Tice, who is the project officer. Peter, who has his Ph.D., is currently working for NSDUH as a project officer for the United States. He has ten years of the federal project (and contract) management expertise on contracts for scientific research in areas of education, substance abuse, mental health. Peter Tice graduated from the University of Ohio in 1993 with a BA in Sociology. Peter then graduated from the University of Cincinnati and then he 95 with an MA in Sociology. Finally, he finished his education with a Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of Cincinnati in 1999. Peter has dedicated his entire career to mental health awareness and studies. I understand why he was the overseeing project officer in the research done in 2016.

On a side note going to the website where this study completed, the site was last updated on August 2nd, 2016. 

Looking into the six people who concluded the study, I realize that this study is extremely wide open and diverse, not about one subject. It is an extensive range of substance abuse and mental health issues, very different backgrounds, examples such as nicotine use, sugar intake, drug abuse on various drugs. It wasn’t like one person was solely using cannabis while being examined or asked to take part in the study. The statistics began in a way skewed, subliminally brainwashing all those that read and claimed the place they read it. I do not see it as an accurate source for medical cannabis and should be redone or taken off the CDC sure completely 

Scientists know that marijuana contains over 100 compounds of cannabinoids, which have biological effects on our bodies. Medically, doctors can prescribe marijuana for physical ailments like arthritis and cancer symptoms as well as other mental health issues like PTSD, depression, anxiety. The role that cannabis plays in medicine is still murky/foggy. Since it is a scheduled class one drug, there are laws set in place all over this country and world that make it impossible to research in a professional setting. All studies done promoting the use of cannabis therapeutically for different ailments do not get promoted through media; individuals have to do their own research to educate themselves. 

A team of researchers in Canada and the US conducted a review of the science. In the report: clinical psychology review, researchers found evidence that cannabis can likely benefit people dealing with PTSD, depression, and social anxiety, although people with bipolar disorder, for instance, there appear to be more negative side effects than positive ones. There is also articles that suggests marijuana can help with overcoming addiction. 

Researching different articles and studies into this understanding of mental health and cannabis use, I am finding that a lot of comments come from clinical directors arguing that cannabis leads to schizophrenia and other psychosis disorders. Some reports with patients who have schizophrenia have reported feeling calm, even happier, suggesting there can be benefits for those who have mental health issues and are wanting to make those mental abnormalities sane, even if temporary. Some patients reported feeling uncomfortable or paranoid, and they stopped taking the drug for those apparent reasons. 

I do agree that cannabis consumption should wait until 21 years of age for recreational use since it can cause higher effects as adolescent brains have more CB1 receptors which hold the THC in longer, than an adult brain. I remember to a time of paranoia with my attempts at smoking marijuana as a teenager. I think adolescence should be learning yoga and meditation to help adapt to struggles during their teen years. As I said, cannabis should not be consumed until after 21 years of age for recreational use when the brain is still developing. We have a lot of recent studies regarding the benefits of marijuana, yet none or published by our government or CDC at this time. Time for an update America.