Compared to alcohol and other drugs, cannabis is relatively benign. Potent strains of cannabis can induce paranoia, hallucinations and rapid heartbeat. These occurrences are more common with ingested cannabis among inexperienced users, and the symptoms most often abate in a matter of hours. Hospitalizations due to cannabis consumption account for roughly 5% of all illicit drug hospitalisations. Smoking cannabis produces carbon monoxide which can cause pulmonary damage, though it anecdotal evidence indicates that the damaging effects of cannabis on the lungs are less pronounced than those of tobacco. Annually, in Australia over 6,000 deaths are attributed to alcohol, more than 21,000 are caused by tobacco consumption. There has never been a fatality directly attributable to cannabis.
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