Can Marijuana Help Me Study Better?
No, any type of drug whether it is marijuana, caffeine, alcohol, prescription drugs, or even sugar does not help anyone study better. Of course, everyone has their own study rituals and routines, and what they believe works for them to help stay focused while studying. However, substances that alter the chemistry of the brain, such as stimulants or depressants can directly impact short-term memory. Some studies have shown that immediately after smoking marijuana, the short-term or working memory is impaired, which is needed to absorb and retain new information. Marijuana will reduce the speed and accuracy of working memory, which hinders a person's ability to filter information and store this knowledge. Unfortunately, many college students turn to drugs to help them study. Common study drugs include Adderall and Ritalin, and most college students smoke marijuana, and many use it as a study drug.
There is a lot of debate around marijuana, focus, productivity, and motivation. Yet, marijuana has a negative effect on short-term memory. There are roughly 60 types of cannabinoids within cannabis. These are chemical compounds that act on receptors throughout the brain. Tetrahydrocannabinol or THC is responsible for most of the effects of marijuana. In fact, THC resembles another cannabinoid that is naturally produced in the brain called anandamide. This chemical regulates mood, sleep, memory, and appetite. The cannabinoids keep the neurons firing within the brain, and magnify thoughts and perception, while keeping a person fixed on them, until they go off on a different tangent, jumping from one thought to another. Therefore, smoking marijuana while driving, studying, or doing activities that require coordination is not a good idea. Cannabinoids affect the levels of dopamine in the brain like caffeine, sugar, and alcohol.
When marijuana is interacting with the brain, it does impair your ability to form new memories. The effects of marijuana depend on the amount that is taken, the potency of marijuana, along with a person's tolerance, and even gender. It is not easy studying for tests and exams, and it takes focus and determination. Healthy study habits are important, yet many college students cram before tests, stay up all night, and consume substances to help them study. Most colleges have programs to help students develop healthy study routines. Accessing these resources may work for you and ensure you can study without the use of drugs or alcohol.