Marijuana, a green or gray mixture of dried flowers and leaves of hemp (Cannabis sativa) has been used throughout many different cultures to achieve a higher level of awareness or consciousness. Since slang terms for drugs change quickly, varying from one part of country to another part, recent lists of names for this drug often contain more than 200 different terms. There are nearly 400 chemical substances in marijuana, but one that affects the human brain is THC (Tetra-hidro-cannabinol). Many cultures have used this drug for centuries, for health and religious purposes. Tribes in South America, Africa and India have used marijuana to increase health and restore or boost energy. For over 5000 years, marijuana has been used as an anesthetic, as evidenced by its mention in a book of medicine from China in the Second Century BC, Treatise on the Plants.
Often used in traditional medicine in Africa and Asia to treat muscle spasms to relieve pain or to treat indigestion, cannabis and its derivatives are useful in treating glaucoma and optic nerve-related eye disease. Even in patients with cancer, cannabis acts as a real stimulus for appetite, reducing nausea and making the patients feel more confortable with the illness. After long research in this area, researchers have found evidence of harmful effects of smoking on the immune system, sexual performance, as well as on the airway. Evidence indicates that marijuana smoke irritates the trachea and bronchi at the same time. Although there is not a physical addiction to marijuana case, consumers who smoke daily are at risk to gain a psychological addiction. Social and emotional life are affected, but most smokers can cease consumption without suffering psychological withdrawal symptoms. It also has the ability to accumulate into the body so it takes time to detox marijuana