Cannabis increases brain ageing by 2.8 years, making it worse for mind than bi-polar disorder or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.
A new study has now found that smoking marijuana ages the brain by an average of three years.
According to a study published in MailOnline, Cannabis was found to increase brain ageing by 2.8 years, making it worse for the mind than bi-polar disorder or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.
The study also found that schizophrenics’ brains were found to age by an even greater average of four years.
In fact, drinking too aged the brain by 0.6 years, according to the study.
According to lead author Dr Daniel Amen, founder of Amen Clinics, the cannabis abuse finding was especially important, as marijuana is often seen as an innocuous substance.
Researchers analysed the blood flow through 128 regions of volunteers’ brains to determine how old they thought the individual was.
Once they learnt the person's actual age, they were able to measure the rate of accelerated ageing.
Dr George Perry, from the University of Texas, San Antonio, commented on the research saying: “This is one of the first population-based imaging studies, and these large studies are essential to answer how to maintain brain structure and function during ageing.”
No link was found between depression and brain ageing.
The findings were published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease.