Cannabis Debunked: Addressing Common Concerns

< Back to all articles

As more jurisdictions loosen legislation around the legality of cannabis, it’s caused many to question how safe the plant really is. We’ve scoured through the best studies and reviewed the industry’s leaders on the subject and are here to debunk the rumours and answer your common questions.  

Is Cannabis legal?

As of October 17, 2018, recreational cannabis is legal for adult-use. With this change in legislation, now known as The Cannabis Act, comes strict regulation. These regulations include restriction to minors, limitations on possession and consumption, licensing for distribution and more. Although each province has unique legislation, you can view the Federal regulations here and find out more about each province below.


British Columbia


New Brunswick

Newfoundland and Labrador

Northwest Territories

Nova Scotia



Prince Edward Island




Is Cannabis addictive?

The answer to this is more complex than a simple yes or no. The word ‘addiction’ means different things to different people. Sometimes a chemical dependence characterized by a withdrawal of symptoms one has never experienced before is referred to as an addiction. Others think that addiction manifests physiologically and cannabis can be just as addicting as gambling, food or alcohol is for some.

You don’t often hear the words ‘cannabis addiction’ in the scientific and medical communities. Instead, people use the term ‘cannabis use disorder’, a condition sometimes called DSM-V. To diagnose someone with DSM-V, 11 indicators are referenced that speak to cannabis use, cravings, and life impacts. Should one become diagnosed with DSM-V, there is treatment and many different combinations of them depending on which markers are triggered by examining their behaviour.

It’s important to recognize that cannabis has and continues to be used to enrich lives and treat many different ailments and diseases. From that, there is a small percentage that may be diagnosed with DSM-V. It’s important to be aware of the 11 markers and your behaviour while using cannabis.  

Is Cannabis a “gateway drug”?

Rumours have circulated that those who use cannabis are opening themselves up to being led to harder drugs such as cocaine and heroin. This argument tends to be raised when cannabis use restrictions are modified and relaxed.

This study from 1997  showed that using cannabis did not affect the probability of individuals taking illicit drugs. 

Does Cannabis lower IQ or kill brain cells?

While many fear cannabis is one of many substances that can cause damage to the brain and nervous system, this is in fact false. More recent studies have debunked this claim, this study from 2016 compared the IQ of identical twins, where one had abstained from cannabis, while the other used it for a decade. The study concluded no measurable link between cannabis use and decreased IQ.

What are the side effects of using Cannabis?

Think of any medicine available for anyone to use, they all have their unique set of side effects. For most of us, we don’t experience such warning symptoms with most medication we take, as it affects the outlier group of users. If you are a new user of cannabis, it’s important to be aware of its potential side effects, that are mainly caused by its psychoactive ingredient, THC. These effects include feeling paranoid or anxious, experiencing dry mouth, and dry red eyes. Users can also feel like they have an overactive appetite or feel very lethargic.

If you’re worried about experiencing such side effects there are a couple actions you can take:

  • Try a strain of cannabis that is high in CBD, that has less psychoactive properties than THC strains
  • Start with a low dose when using higher-THC strains
  • Stay hydrated while used cannabis

Can Cannabis cause schizophrenia or trigger other mental illnesses?

This Harvard study suggested there is a link to users under 20 who regularly use cannabis may be at a higher risk for developing psychosis over the next decade of their lives, compared to those who did not use cannabis. It further describes that regular cannabis use at a young age also increases the chance of one developing schizophrenia, a disabling brain disorder that not only causes psychosis but affects concentration and emotional expression. However, research has shown there may be an association between smoking cannabis and developing psychosis later on. There is not enough evidence to claim that cannabis causes psychosis and schizophrenia.

How safe is Cannabis?

Health Canada’s Access to Cannabis for Medical Purposes Regulations (ACMPR)  are designed to ensure that there is a safe supply of medical cannabis available to individuals from Licensed Producers. These producers must meet all requirements from the ACMPR around physical security regulations, production and packaging regulations as well as proper import and export documentation, if applicable. Bonify has implemented an extensive quality management system with more than 300 components to assure consistent products are produced.

Do I have to smoke it?

Common methods of consuming medical cannabis include vapourizing, smoking or baking into an edible product to digest. With your health as a priority, we recommend vapourizing your medical cannabis.

Vapourization is the process of heating the cannabis to a temperature prior to combustion, allowing you to experience the benefits of the cannabinoids while avoiding the health risks associated with inhaling burnt plant matter from smoking. Additionally, this consumption method is more efficient than ingesting baked edibles, which will help avoid over-consumption.

Shop our selection of vapourizers here.


Have a concern we haven’t addressed? We’re happy to answer your questions. Send us an email at or call us (844) 586-3556.

< Previous PostThe Many Facets of Terpenes Next Post >The Medicinal Wonders in Cannabis