Many of us grew up hearing that cannabis causes memory loss. This isn’t always the case.
A study conducted by scientists at the University of Bonn in Germany, which was published in the journal Nature Medicine, discovered that aging mice treated with daily small doses of THC had their cognitive decline reversed.
They performed better on cognitive tasks, such as navigating through a maze.
The researchers found that there might be potential for keeping dementia at bay through the use of marijuana.
“If we can rejuvenate the brain so that everybody gets five to 10 more years without needing extra care, then that is more than we could have imagined,” said study leader Andras Bilkei-Gorzo.
Ironically, the THC had the reverse effect in younger mice; their cognitive abilities were impaired.
In early 2016, researchers at Switzerland’s University of Lausanne conducted a study in which they found a link between years of daily cannabis use and a decline in the short-term memory of middle-aged adults, measured in verbal skills.
During the same year, University College London researchers could find no impact from cannabis on the IQ of young users. There was virtually no difference between the IQs of young cannabis users and non-users. These findings made their way to Science Magazine but didn’t get much mainstream media attention.
Obviously, some of these studies make it to major sources of the media, while others don’t.
In July 2011, Time magazine allowed a guest editorial by Maia Szalavitz on a study that followed 2,000 Australians through their early adulthood and found no difference in cognitive abilities between cannabis users and non-users.
There appears to be a double standard regarding which kind of findings are allowed to make headlines.
Hopefully, research continues to shed more light on the positive aspects of marijuana so that more people may benefit from it, and that these findings make it to the forefront of the major information outlets.