Heavy marijuana use may harm the brain

New NIDA-funded research shows that heavy marijuana use (at least four times per week over the past six months) is linked to adverse changes in the function and structure of brain areas associated with reward, decision making, and motivation.  Heavy marijuana use can also enhance some brain circuits – possibly to compensate for reduced function in specific brain regions. This effect was more pronounced in those who started using at a young age, indicating that developing brains are particularly vulnerable to marijuana’s effects.

Illustration of a neuron cell

Although further long-term studies are needed to determine whether marijuana caused these effects, these scientific findings add to the growing literature showing that heavy marijuana use may harm the brain.

For a copy of the abstract (published online November 10), go to www.pnas.org/content/early/2014/11/05/1415297111.abstract.

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Road Blocks to Communication

We all have, at one time or another, blocked, screwed up, and/or made more difficult in some way communication between yourself and ….partners, parents, children, siblings, bosses, teachers, therapists, clients …basically everyone. Knowing something about yourself, what your triggers and hot buttons are can help to not only smooth communication but to help you express what you feel and think. Listed below are some communication road blocks as well as common statements that are often said.
When have you said these? What was going on before the comments and with whom were you talking with? What might be an alternative statement(s).

Evaluate:
You should You’re wrong You should know that

Unsolicited Advice:
It would be best for you to Why don’ t you

Diagnosing:
You’re getting defensive

Commanding:
You had better You have to

Lecturing:
Don’t you realize

Devaluation Response:
It’s not so bad

Topping:
That’s nothing compared to

Condescending:
I figured you’d do that!  I should’ve expected that from you!

Al l or Nothing:
You always do that! Yes you do! You’ re never

Prying: Puts other on the spot/defemsive and is intrusive

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