Findings from The World Mental Health Surveys

Generally, it is well known that illegal drugs such as Cannabis have certain long term and short term effects which can lead to illness, disability, or death. Being the cause of various diseases, it is important to understand how much disability a certain illness causes. This is also referred to as burden of disease. This then led to the launching of the World Health Organization which under it contained the World Mental Health. Therefore, the World Mental Health Surveys have researched lifetime use of this substance in various countries pinpointing on young adults. Their main objective is to examine the age of onset of use and how a person’s social and economic status is affected.

What did the researchers do obtain information?

Data on the drug use was obtained in seventeen countries. The countries were determined by the presence of mergers and on funding for the survey. Lay interviewers who are experienced performed face to face interviews except in one country which it was practiced by telephone communication; using a standardized structured diagnostic interview for psychiatric conditions. Participants were questioned on the usage of the drug and the age they initialized using it. Interviewers recorded the ages, sex, marital status, employment and household income of each participant. From the results, some countries had higher levels of Cannabis compared to others. The worldwide distribution of the drug usage was then unevenly distributed. Moreover, males were the more victims of the drug use compared to females. Younger adults also were more likely to have used the drug than older adults. Cannabis use was not related to the drug policy; since countries with more regulatory policies did not have lower levels of the drug use than those with more liberal policies.

The findings were of great use to the government and health organizations since they contributed to the understanding of the global effects of Cannabis. The research presented comprehensive and important data on the patterns of drug use from national samples of all regions. However, the survey was not done in all countries. Within the countries surveyed, there were also different rates of participation; hence it was unclear whether people accurately reported their drug use when interviewed.

In conclusion, knowing the adult lifetime Cannabis use by country leads to the development of healthier nations by directing policies against the drug usage. Furthermore, the World Health Organization has played a great role in supporting the countries affected to prevent and reduce the problems caused by Cannabis. It has done this by their regulatory control and advice to the United Nations.  Cannabis has been classified as the most commonly used illicit drug. However, it has very limited benefits of usage.

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