Causes, Effects and Dangers of Hashish


Hashish is a product of cannabis and it is made from resin extracted from the flower clusters and top leaves of the marijuana plant. Marijuana, a cheaper and less potent substance, is obtained from the cut tops of cannabis plants. Hashish is obtained by concentrating the resin from this marijuana.

Marijuana includes, besides resin, other plant material like leaves, stems, seeds, etc. These other materials make marijuana less potent than hashish, that is, a given weight of hashish made from a particular plant will be more potent than the same given weight of marijuana coming from the same plant.

Hashish is a product of cannabis and it is made from resin extracted from the flower clusters and top leaves of the marijuana plant.

However, certain strains of top quality marijuana may be more potent than certain strains of low quality hashish. Add to this, the fact that most hashish available in the US has been stepped on (diluted) by importers, it has become hard to find the top quality hashish available in the late 1960s and 1970s.

Like marijuana, hashish is usually smoked or eaten. Hash oil is more potent than hashish and is an extract of hashish. Hashish is intoxicating and can produce euphoria and other feelings similar to marijuana.

It is an illegal substance in the United States and many other counties with no accepted medical use. As with marijuana, the active ingredient in hashish is delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). Differences, in the way hashish looks, from the dry and dusty soil of Lebanon and Morocco and the green, subtropical mountain slopes of the Himalayas (Nepal, Afghanistan, etc.) derives chiefly from the manner of harvesting.

Hashish In The USA

Most of the hash available in the US is shit. When it is imported the quality is usually very good but importers usually "press" the hash with inert materials that increase the weight, and lower the quality. For this reason it is usually better to buy weed instead of marijuana, unless you are sure the hashish is good quality.

Since the late 1960s the hash produced in some countries has deteriorated. Because there is such a strong demand for hash abroad, lower and lower quality hashish is being produced in countries that formerly produced only top quality product.

Because people who have never tried good hashish don't know any better, even low grades of hash find a ready market.

The Problem

Marijuana is the most widely used illicit drug in the country. There are an estimated 5.1 million regular marijuana users nationwide, including some 500,000 or more in New York. After declining steadily through the 1980s, marijuana use has increased among teenagers. Although advocates for legalizing marijuana argue that it is a moderately harmless drug, its negative effects on school performance, the known health risks for young people, the driving hazards associated with it, and the potential harm to pregnant women and others who become regular users present a convincing argument against its use, regardless of legality.

The Drug

Marijuana and hashish come from the hemp plant, cannabis sativa, which grows throughout most of the tropical and temperate zones of the world. Marijuana is typically sold in the form of cut, dried leaves, stems and flowers of this plant. It is generally smoked like a cigarette or cigar, or in pipes. Sometimes it's eaten.

Hashish is the dried, caked resin from the hemp plant flower and is generally smoked in pipes. Hashish oil is extracted from the hemp resin; a drop or two of the oil on a tobacco cigarette produces roughly the same effect as a marijuana cigarette.

Some street names for marijuana are grass pot, herb, weed and smoke; marijuana cigarettes are called joints or reefers. Hashish is commonly referred to as hash.

The Effects

The major active ingredient in marijuana and hashish is tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). The exact nature of its action is not entirely understood, although it is believed to change to a psychoactive compound in the liver. The higher the THC content, the stronger the effects. The average potency of marijuana in this country has increased since the 1970s.

The effect sought in cannabis use is euphoria, a feeling of wellbeing and elation. This is usually accompanied by a state of altered perception, particularly of distance and time. The euphoric feeling usually peaks within ten to thirty minutes of smoking marijuana, but residual effects may last from two to three hours.

Marijuana and hashish can impair balance, coordination, speech and thinking. Even small amounts of marijuana have been found to adversely affect driving performance.

Some users experience adverse reactions ranging from mild anxiety to panic. Acute psychotic reactions are rare, but episodes of paranoia are possible.

The Dangers

Marijuana and hashish products contain cancer causing elements (carcinogens), just like cigarettes. Although marijuana is seldom smoked with the same frequency as tobacco, it can lead to upper respiratory problems such as those caused by cigarette smoking.

Chronic, heavy users of marijuana often show memory and concentration impairments. However, these effects generally disappear several weeks after use stops. Some people can become tolerant to the effects of marijuana with long term heavy use, needing larger doses to achieve the same effect. Psychological dependence is also possible, particularly for young people.

Experimentation with marijuana generally starts during the teen years. Marijuana and hashish use can interfere with a young person's physical, mental and social development. A growing street fad involves the use of "blunts," cigars that are rerolled with marijuana. When combined with alcohol, this use pattern can result in even more serious problems.

Marijuana and hashish are sometimes "spiked" with other substances such as PCP and crack, making their effects unexpected and more hazardous.

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