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EFFECTS OF MARIJUANA

Question: What are the long-term effects of marijuana use?

Joe Rodrigues of TT&S Contracting applies some finishing touches to freshly poured concrete on a sidewalk on Chesterfield Street in Aiken. Mr Rodrigues was doing the work for the City of Aiken.  Rainier Ehrhardt/Staff
Rainier Ehrhardt/Staff
Joe Rodrigues of TT&S Contracting applies some finishing touches to freshly poured concrete on a sidewalk on Chesterfield Street in Aiken. Mr Rodrigues was doing the work for the City of Aiken.

Answer: Findings so far show that regular use of marijuana or THC might play a role in some kinds of cancer and in problems with the respiratory and immune systems.

- Cancer: It's hard to know for sure whether regular marijuana use causes cancer. But it is known that marijuana contains some of the same, and sometimes even more, of the cancer-causing chemicals found in tobacco smoke. Studies show that someone who smokes five joints per day might be taking in as many cancer-causing chemicals as someone who smokes a full pack of cigarettes every day

- Lungs and airways: People who smoke marijuana often develop the same kinds of breathing problems that cigarette smokers have: coughing and wheezing. They tend to have more chest colds than nonusers. They are also at greater risk of getting lung infections such as pneumonia.

- Immune system: Animal studies have found that THC can damage the cells and tissues in the body that help protect against disease. When the immune cells are weakened you are more likely to get sick.

Source: National Institute on Drug Abuse

Activities scheduled for this week include:

TODAY

DANCE LESSON: 8:30-9 p.m. lesson; 9-11 p.m. dance; The Ballroom Dance Center, 525 Grand Slam Drive, Evans; (706) 854-8888

ARBOR DAY: 11 a.m., Memorial Garden, 7022 Evans Town Center Blvd., Evans; singing, guest speakers, reception, free seedlings; (706) 312-7191

STAMP SHOW: 3-7 p.m. today; 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday; America's Best Value Inn, 3023 Washington Road; free appraisals and buyers on-site; (706) 868-6769

LEADERSHIP DISCUSSION: 2 p.m., Augusta State University, 2500 Walton Way; with Lt. Gen. James L. Campbell; held by ASU's department of military science; (706) 737-1644

MAYOR'S PRAYER LUNCHEON: Noon, North Augusta Community Center, 495 Brookside Drive; guest speaker Rep. J. Gresham Barrett, R-S.C.; $10

RELAY FOR LIFE: 6 p.m., North Augusta High School, 2000 Knobcone Road; free; (803) 278-5757

SATURDAY

ARTSFEST: 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Augusta Preparatory Day School, 285 Flowing Wells Road; showcase of work of area artists, exhibition of student work, demos, live entertainment and food; free

MARCH OF DIMES WALKAMERICA: 8:30 a.m. registration, 9 a.m. walk; H. Odell Weeks Activity Center, 1700 Whiskey Road, Aiken; (803) 252-5200

YELLOW JASMINE FESTIVAL: Noon to 9 p.m., downtown North Augusta; fine arts, handmade crafts, garden items, music, fireworks; free, (803) 441-4224 or visit www.northaugusta.net

ARBOR DAY CEREMONY: 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Pendleton King Park, 1600 Troupe St.; featuring 5K run/walk at 9 a.m., tree-planting ceremony with Brig. Gen. Randolph Strong at 10 a.m., animals with Tony Mills at 10:30 a.m.; (706) 738-4321

AUGUSTA CHORAL SOCIETY: 7:30 p.m.; Hull Performing Arts Center, Augusta Preparatory Day School, 285 Flowing Wells Road; performing folk songs with Augusta Prep chorus; (706) 826-4713, www.augustachoralsociety.org

ASU CONSERVATORY JAZZ BAND: 7:30 p.m., Maxwell Performing Arts Theatre, Augusta State University, 2500 Walton Way; free


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