General Question

jabag11's avatar

Does marijuana cause short term memory loss temporarily?

Asked by jabag11 (670 points ) February 10th, 2011

When they say it causes “short term memory loss”, do they mean it causes it temporarily, as in just until a few weeks after you stop smoking it? or that it causes your short term memory to be impaired for life?

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20 Answers

Tropical_Willie's avatar

What was the question? ?
It means if given five numbers to remember, ( 4,6,3,9,1,8) and several minutes asked to repeat the numbers you cannot remember the numbers.

Response moderated (Unhelpful)
wundayatta's avatar

Maybe that’s why people speak so redundantly when high. They always seem to repeat what they say over and over again.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

Oh and no one noticed there are SIX numbers and that’s another MJ or Alcohol issue. ^ ^ ^

kenmc's avatar

You have short term memory loss while high. Not during the sober times in your smoking career, unless you’re high all the time. But then you have another set of problems.

I would say its better than blacking out, though.

thorninmud's avatar

There was an interesting finding last year that the short-term memory effect depends on the kind of weed. There’s a component in weed, cannabidiol, that keeps the THC (the psychoactive component) from affecting memory. “Skunk weed” varieties have a high proportion of THC to cannabidiol, so they do impact memory. Users of other varieties high in cannabidiol showed no memory impairment even when high.

sarahjane90's avatar

Even if I was sober I doubt I could remember all those numbers!

Tropical_Willie's avatar

It not just sober – - -alcohol can affect the short term memory, it’s just brain cells “fried”.

roundsquare's avatar

It means:
You lose your short term memory.
Not:
You lose your memory for a short period of time.

I.e. while you are smoking you will quickly forget things.

Ladymia69's avatar

@wundayatta that’s a generalization.

filmfann's avatar

It means while you are high, you may experience memory problems with things like how the conversation started, or what the other person’s name is.

You asked this question before btw.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

Do we have long term memory issues too? ^ ^ ^

wundayatta's avatar

@ladymia69 That was a joke.

Ladymia69's avatar

Damn, my new “internet sarcasm detector” failed to pick up on that! Well, this is it, I’m taking it back to that guy on the street I bought it from for a refund.

Judi's avatar

I haven’t smoked in 35 years and my short term memory still sucks.
Tomorrow I will probably have bounced checks because I forgot to make a deposit today.

Response moderated (Off-Topic)
sliceswiththings's avatar

In my experience the short term memory loss only lasts as long as I’m high. If I’m really high it’s pretty severe; my example is using the mailroom bathroom at school while stoned once, thinking I was in my dorm bathroom a second later, and being lost and confused for a minute. I’ve never found that there is any residual memory loss after the fact.

MyNewtBoobs's avatar

Most of what it does is while you’re stoned. When you first start smoking, your memory is more… like a permanent case of “wait, why did I come into this room? What was I planning on getting?” But then after maybe 6 months of smoking once every couple of weeks, you start getting real memory problems while you’re stoned – you can’t remember anything since you toked up except for the last 5 seconds.
The longer you smoke, and the more frequently you smoke, the more it will affect your permanent short-term memory. Some of it will return after a few months or years of not smoking, some won’t.

Response moderated (Spam)
dabbler's avatar

If you smoke all the time, poor memory will be your normal state of mind.

Frankly I think that “poor memory” is not really what’s going on but that there is so much extra stimulus going on that regular memory is drowned out into the noise.

If you’re used to pot and don’t abuse it then your stoned state can be an acute awareness.
You can do things you will definitely remember.

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