If “polydrug use” is simultaneous use of multiple drugs, possibly as one product combining several drugs … then presumably at least some synthetics are reaching the market as ingredients of such mixtures, so a clear distinction might be difficult to maintain.
all recreational drug use is detrimental to the health and well being of the individual
I look forward to your campaign against alcohol. Good luck with that.
(Speaking as a non-user, I’d still quite like to hear more NZ reggae though, so this seems one of the rare cases where other people’s drug use could impact me positively. I’m not exactly seeing a problem here.)
weeding out these misunderstandings
Drug Harm Index didn’t explicitly talk about being remanded or sentenced to prison as a drug harm
If so, that's quite an omission!
Well, yes; and that social networking approach is the sampling technique in this case. Nothing wrong with that, but it’s better to be explicit about the possible impact when interpreting the results. E.g. more fully networked users (and/or your readers!) are likely to be more knowledgeable about the specifics of compound ratios.
at least two different groups of people using
I think you’re right, medicinal users are more likely to be a collection of clusters than a single homogenous group. Not least because of barriers to access leading to disparate types of cannabis source (as you point out, past recreational users may have an access advantage).
Corollary 1: different survey techniques / data sources will capture different clusters with different levels of success (resulting in different overall demographic profiles for ethnicity, income, and range of medical conditions cited).
Corollary 2: we should be very cautious about making generalisations from any one sample. Especially, look for clusterings before calculating averages.
So what you’re describing is a coping mechanism whereby the cannabis allows some plausible deniability regarding the dementia?
That may well be of some psychological benefit, but most researchers would hesitate to assign “medical value” on that basis alone.
The combination of (online questionnaire delivery) + (higher-than-average earners) + (knowledgeable about the topic) suggests a likely bias in the survey responses towards the educated middle class, and so (much as the results indicate) directed away from the stereotypical cannabis user. (Though specifically medicinal use should also skew older and, as a result, higher-income, anyway.)
But the problem then is the lack of reliable data to correct such a bias. Historical arrest statistics, for example, are certainly biased in their own right (away from educated middle-class users), and form a large part of what created the stereotype in the first place, so we should not be surprised if the two sources don’t agree.
At this point I would like to direct you towards the episode of Andrew Maxwell’s Public Enemies on the drugs trade (first broadcast in 2013, but recently rebroadcast on BBC Radio 4 Extra, so currently available for streaming until the end of July 2019).
“I’m not going to ask if you’ve used drugs; I’ll just tell the jokes, and I’ll know from your reactions.”
On ignoring alcohol, Maxwell comments (9 minutes in): it’s like “a government [that was] officially vegetarian, [and] used all the power of the state to go after steak restaurants, but instead of shutting down meat, they had a war on condiments.”
For The Whinny!
If only it were more “Hair!” and less “Harrumph!”
Just high and mighty?