What is Pursue Your Passion?

It’s a campaign launched by Health Canada to educate you about risks of cannabis use on your mental health and brain function.

It is also about pursuing activities that can make you feel your best, without the potential health and safety risk of cannabis.

At what age is your brain fully developed?

What we’re covering today

  • Fact-based information on the effects of cannabis on your mental health and brain function
  • Activities you can pursue that produce similar chemical reactions in the brain but in a healthier way

Did you know?

The brain continues to develop until the age of 25 and some compounds in cannabis can change the way brain cells communicate with one another.

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Senses; Feelings, Emotions and Behavior; Movement and Coordination; Integration of Information and Perception; Thinking, Planning and Decision-Making; Feelings and Emotions

360° Brain

The compounds in cannabis affect the same systems in the brain involved in brain development.

Together let’s access different parts of the brain and learn about what they do and the impact cannabis use can have on each one.

360° Brain

What part of the brain registers and stores memories?

Did you know…

Youth and young adults who consume cannabis, especially cannabis containing THC, are more likely to experience mental health problems?

This happens because cannabis can interfere with healthy brain development until your mid 20s.

SHORT-TERM EFFECTS OF CANNABIS

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Affects mood and feelings

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Makes it harder to learn and remember things

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Impairs your ability to drive safely or operate equipment

LONG-TERM EFFECTS OF CANNABIS

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Affects mental health in some people

Starting to use cannabis early, regularly and continuously over time can lead to the development or worsening of mental health problems related to cannabis dependence, anxiety, depression, and even schizophrenia in those who have a family history.

The likelihood of experiencing these mental health problems is greatest in those:

Who start using cannabis at an earlier age

Who use cannabis frequently and over time

Who use cannabis products containing higher levels of THC

Who have a family history of mental health disorders

Effects of reducing or stopping cannabis use on mental health

Using cannabis can reduce the effect of medications that some may take for mental health conditions.

Reducing or stopping cannabis use can help improve mental health.

Name a short-term or long-term risk of using cannabis

Let’s explore some activities you can pursue that produce similar chemical reactions in the brain but in a healthier way!

What are some activities you are passionate about?

Passionate about engaging in physical activities?

Compounds in cannabis affect many parts of the brain.  These brain areas are also engaged during physical activity.

Physical activities that you love require a diverse range of core functions such as coordination, reaction time and balance. Cannabis can affect those core functions, meaning it can also affect your ability to enjoy the activities you love.

Name an activity that demonstrates the need for one or more of these:

  • control
  • balance
  • coordination
  • movement
  • reaction time
  • decision-making

Passionate about creating and listening to music?

Some people turn to cannabis to relieve stress. Creating and listening to music can make you feel happy and decrease stress.

Cannabis can affect thinking and concentration (frontal lobe), mood (frontal lobe, amygdala), memory (hippocampus) and alertness (hypothalamus), which can all impact one's ability to learn and perform.

Name your favourite song.

How does it make you feel when you hear it?

Passionate about viewing and creating art?

Some people turn to cannabis to relieve stress.  Viewing and creating art can make you feel happy and decrease stress.

Viewing and creating art triggers the release of the "feel-good" chemical dopamine within the brain's frontal-temporal lobes and decreases the stress causing hormone cortisol.

Engaging in a creative activity triggers the release of the "feel-good" chemical known as?

So, let’s Pursue Your Passion

Physical Activity

Select 2 activities – 1 minute each

  • Mountain climbers
  • Jumping jacks
  • Sun salutations
  • Shadow boxing

Creative Activity

Select 1 activity for 2 minutes

  • Pick one object and draw it
  • Go to www.weavesilk.com to create a digital image
  • Go to www.typatone.com each letter you type corresponds to a specific musical note putting a new spin to your composition

Mountain Climbers

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Jumping Jacks

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Sun Salutations

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Shadow Boxing

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Pick one object and draw it

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Go to www.weavesilk.com to create a digital image

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Go to www.typatone.com each letter you type corresponds to a specific musical note putting a new spin to your composition

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Frequent and long-term cannabis use can have a significant impact on brain development and mental health. The best way to protect your health is to not use cannabis.

Engaging in physical activity, music, art, and general activities that you are passionate about, can activate the same areas of the brain as cannabis, especially when trying to relieve stress or anxiety.

How will you Pursue Your Passion?

QUESTIONS?

To learn about the health effects of cannabis, visit: Canada.ca/cannabis