Dear youth of Montana,

I'm a 31-year-old radio DJ and I know you're already cringing anticipating a corny, over-the-top diatribe that you've already heard 1000 times before. Dude, I get it. But I'm not Mr. Mackey from South Park repeating the slogan "drugs are bad, mmkay"— whether you understood that reference or not, I think you get my point. The phrase "drugs are bad" is meaningless if you haven't heard the reasons why they're bad in a way that makes sense to you.

For drugs like meth and heroin, it's probably clear to you why you should stay away from those, they're that deadly. The signs of danger for cannabis being less obvious is what makes it so sinister, and there's a lot of misinformation out there that makes it harder to see truth from fiction. For example, you've probably been told you can't overdose on THC (a psychoactive chemical in cannabis) actually, you can.

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There's also dangers of cannabis that don't get as much attention as they probably should. Have you heard of cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome (CHS)? According to WebMD.com "CHS causes you to have repeated episodes of vomiting, severe nausea, stomach pain, and dehydration" and that "you might get if you regularly use cannabis for a long time." Sure, the condition is rare, again according to WebMD, but it's one more reason to not smoke, vape or take edibles. I knew someone who suffered from CHS in college and it was a horrific experience for them. 

According to the CDC, some of the negative effects of teen marijuana use include "difficulty thinking and problem-solving, problems with memory and learning, and reduced coordination." You've got just one chance of entering adulthood the right way, don't waste that opportunity using drugs.

Sincerely,

Christian Grant

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