Although I'm critical of our drug policies regarding pot, it's because I see them as so hypocritical (and thus legitimacy-draining) and wasteful given the opportunity costs for other areas of corr sent and crim just that they supplant, not because I think pot is a good thing for anyone not using it for (real) medicinal purposes. I've made the point before that I've never smoked, not even faked inhaling, anything first hand (although my lungs probably will never recover from a childhood of smokers). I don't see the point, and I used to get aggravated in the good old hippie days when pot advocates would downplay charges that marijuana smoke was just as bad for you or worse than tobacco. How could it not be?
Well, actually, appears it's worse.
A new study finds that the development of bullous lung disease occurs in marijuana smokers approximately 20 years earlier than tobacco smokers.
A condition often caused by exposure to toxic chemicals or long-term exposure to tobacco smoke, bullous lung disease (also known as bullae) is a condition where air trapped in the lungs causes obstruction to breathing and eventual destruction of the lungs.
At present, about 10% of young adults and 1% of the adult population smoke marijuana regularly. Researchers find that the mean age of marijuana-smoking patients with lung problems was 41, as opposed to the average age of 65 years for tobacco-smoking patients.
[The lead author] added, "Marijuana is inhaled as extremely hot fumes to the peak inspiration and held for as long as possible before slow exhalation. This predisposes to greater damage to the lungs and makes marijuana smokers are more prone to bullous disease as compared to cigarette smokers."
Patients who smoke marijuana inhale more and hold their breath four times longer than cigarette smokers. It is the breathing manoeuvres of marijuana smokers that serve to increase the concentration and pulmonary deposition of inhaled particulate matter – resulting in greater and more rapid lung destruction.
But before you drug warrior types lay claim to this as proof that users should be imprisoned for their recklessness and stupidity, just remember that we'll be the ones paying for those damaged lungs if they're in our prisons and those dollars could be used to prevent real crimes and victims, or maybe even treat and solve some of the use. And you potheads who deny you're hurting yourselves? The 60s are over, man.