As cannabis becomes more accepted across America, we are seeing a natural rise in those consuming the plant. Whatever the motive is behind the use, the recent stats show that there are now as many marijuana users in the U.S. as there are cigarette smokers.
But if you were to ask a group of 100 consumers why they started smoking pot in the first place, we bet you would get some interesting answers! From curiosity to medicinal purposes – there are a range of reasons why we turn to pot.
In this article, we are going to look at the top five most common reasons why people start smoking weed!
#1 Medicinal Cannabis Use
It seems only right to start off with perhaps one of the most prominent answers we get to this question, which of course is the use of cannabis for medicinal purposes.
Luckily the majority of U.S. states have now got some kind of law in place that legalizes cannabis in some form, and more often than not, this is the legalization of the flower for medicinal use. With new studies being published on a weekly basis that boast the medicinal properties and potent benefits of the plant, it is becoming impossible to ignore.
Also, while there are still certain states that continue to fight against cannabis, CBD from hemp is legal across all 50 states, making it easier for patients to seek relief from the cannabis plant, even if it’s not legal to smoke it in their state.
With the research and discussions around medical cannabis and the benefits of CBD along with other cannabinoids being so frequent, it seems obvious that patients of qualifying conditions may be keen to try it out. With so many traditional medications falling short of the mark when it comes to efficacy, affordability, and safety, cannabis is fast becoming a healthy alternative for so many people.
Add into this the fact that the option is there to treat many conditions with cannabis without even getting high (CBD Oil produces zero psychoactive effects), it becomes a whole lot more appealing for a wider range of people – including children and the elderly.
Across most of the articles written on the subject of cannabis, people are often put into the medicinal or recreational categories, with virtually nothing in-between! However, this is just not an accurate representation of why people smoke pot.
Recreational cannabis use is a very broad term for a lot of people, and it can arguably be applied to anybody smoking weed that does not have a medical complaint. However, the reality is that the individuals who start smoking weed do so for a reason, regardless of what it may be!
One often overlooked motivation for many cannabis users at the beginning is sheer curiosity, which is no real surprise when we consider how much of a controversial and hot topic marijuana is! It turns out that the more we discuss the flower, the more curious people become, and this often leads them to trying it out for themselves.
While some anti-cannabis groups may argue that the exposure of cannabis leads people astray, statistics easily show that this is quite untrue. It is very easy to find information about cannabis that shows all the points (both good and bad) about smoking the bud, thus it is then the rightful decision of the individual to smoke, or not smoke, based on the research they have done.
#3 To Relieve Stress
You can’t read an article about cannabis without coming across the argument that it is a powerful and natural way to relieve stress. Over the years, this idea of cannabis being a potent stress reliever has often been dramatized across media, which has added to the inaccurate stigma to the plant.
However, it is true that cannabis can relieve stress; the cannabinoids found within the plant (such as CBD) work within our endocannabinoid system to regulate a number of things, one of them being mood being mood!
Of course, though, the effects you get from cannabis depend highly on the strain you opt for, so those new to smoking should always do their research before firing up a stress-relieving joint. That being said, one of the underlying properties across all weed strains is the promotion of parasympathetic nervous system activity, which galvanizes a “rest and digest” (and relax!) response rather than a stressful, adrenaline-releasing “fight or flight” response.
#4 Peer Pressure
As with anything else that is criminal or illegal, there is always an element of peer pressure at hand. While this is often associated with younger individuals, it can be applied to all ages and backgrounds.
It appears that many cannabis users have been initiated into the industry through peer pressure from friends or co-workers, which is an incredibly damaging way to begin what should be a pleasurable experience. However, it’s likely true that many who started smoking pot this way have continued to do so, and now enjoy all that the flower has to offer.
In any regard, it is important to note that peer pressure to smoke cannabis – or do anything at all – is incredibly irresponsible and can lead to negative and sometimes long-lasting effects. We advise anyone who feels under pressure to try cannabis to avoid the situation where possible; marijuana, along with anything, should be each and everyone’s individual’s choice.
Whether we like to admit it or not, perhaps the second most common reason people try cannabis is to get high! It is often also the reason so many of us continue coming back for more. With hundreds of strains all offering a different type of high, it can be a really enjoyable and beneficial experience.
Most of the reason behind the negative stigma attached to cannabis is due to the THC contained within the plant. THC is the psychoactive cannabinoid that gives the feeling of being high, and it has been very misunderstood over the years as being a harmful and mind-altering drug.
We would always recommend to start off low and build up when smoking weed, especially if you are new to the plant as it can lead to unpleasant effects if too much is taken too soon. That being said, there have been no recorded deaths or severe side effects associated with the plant, and hundreds of cases of positive benefits arise from it (so the research speaks for itself!).
There are so many reasons and motivations for trying cannabis, and the whole experience can (and should) be a very personal one. Whether you fall into one of the above categories or have other reasons for smoking, what’s important here is the way you go about consumption.
Cannabis, along with anything, should be well researched before trying for the first time. It is also recommended to take your time searching for the most fitting strain for your needs, so that you can enjoy the experience rather than rushing and potentially having a negative situation on your hands.
Whatever your reasons, cannabis can be a great and beneficial part of your life when done correctly and for the right reasons!