Marijuana is the most popular illegal drug in the United States. It is in the Schedule 1 Drug class assigned by the US DEA. That means it is evaluated as a substance with strong appeal and a high likelihood of abuse but no real medical use. But, is marijuana addictive? Despite decades of assumptions that marijuana was not addictive, long-term global research has amassed vast volumes of data clarifying that marijuana often results in addiction. Nearly 10% of recreational users become addicted to marijuana. It’s called cannabis use disorder.
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- What Is Marijuana?
- Medical Marijuana
- Recreational Effects of Marijuana
- How Is Marijuana Used?
- Side Effects of Marijuana Use
- Health Risks of Habitual Marijuana Use
- Symptoms of Marijuana Addiction
- Addiction Treatment Program for Marijuana
- Best Marijuana Addiction Treatment Center in Ogden, Utah
Are you worried about a friend or loved one who needs help with marijuana addiction? The staff at Renaissance Ranch Ogden can help.
What Is Marijuana?
Marijuana is commonly believed to be the name of the growing plant from which pot leaves are plucked and dried for smoking. But the name of that plant is actually the cannabis Sativa plant, not the marijuana plant. Marijuana is the combined group of parts of the cannabis plant in a dried form ready to smoke. That includes flowers, leaves, seeds, and stems. The primary agent in Cannabis for obtaining the high effects from it is a natural psychoactive chemical called tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
In contradiction to the government’s Schedule 1 classification of marijuana, several THC-based drugs are FDA approved for the treatment of nausea and pain. Further, research into the potential of other promising constituents of cannabis (such as cannabidiol) for medical applications. Naturally, as with so many medicinal drugs with recreational appeal, the difference between proper use and misuse of the substance is an issue with cannabis.
Recreational Effects of Marijuana
The THC in marijuana makes contact with the cannabinoid receptors in the brain cells that generate the sense of pleasure. The resulting sense of high features:
- Sense of tranquility
- Mildly euphoric feeling
- Relaxed, stress-free sensation
- Sense of wonderment
- Enhanced mood
How Is Marijuana Used?
Smoking marijuana is by far the most widespread way of consuming cannabis. Slang names for the drug include pot, weed, grass, herb, bud, ganja, Mary Jane, refer, among other street terms. There are various other modes of intake, including cooking it into foods. It is also often condensed into hashish for smoking, or reduced to hash oil, or even further processed to render powdered THC, its most potent and dangerous form.
Side Effects of Marijuana Use
The high effects of recreational marijuana use are not without their accompanying side effects, potentially including these, among others:
- Poor physical coordination
- Inability to focus
- Extreme hunger
- Paranoid thoughts
- Red eyes
- Dry mouth
- Distorted sense of time
Health Risks of Habitual Marijuana Use
Habitual heavy marijuana use can cause serious effects on a person’s lungs, heart, and mental health, among other negative effects. If you are experiencing some of these symptoms, it’s probably time to consider a marijuana addiction treatment program:
- Compromised immune system
- Increased blood pressure
- Lung infections
- Damage to the central nervous system
- Heart attack
- Learning impairment
- Memory loss
- Suicidal thoughts
- Impaired brain development in young users
- Accidents with injury or death
A study found a nearly 500% increased risk of a heart attack in the first hour after using the drug. Data also suggest that driving under the influence of marijuana raises the risk of accidents by over 200%.
More research is needed to better understand these mental health links and ramifications.
Symptoms of Marijuana Addiction
Can you get addicted to marijuana if you don’t use it often? Decades of research have brought a deeper understanding of marijuana addiction. Marijuana addiction can be identified by the following and other symptoms. If you’re experiencing these symptoms, it’s probably time to work on discontinuing use of the drug:
- Poor school or job performance
- High rates of absenteeism and tardiness
- Increased accident rates
- Relationship issues
- Lethargy, lack of motivation
- Persistent cough with mucus
- Higher heart rate and blood pressure
- Irreparable learning impairment
- Permanent memory loss
- Spending a lot of time and money on obtaining the drug
The THC concentration in marijuana has increased significantly over the years, exposing today’s users to much higher concentrations of THC and a more serious risk of addiction.
Symptoms of Marijuana Withdrawal
Marijuana withdrawal symptoms will usually start within a few days to a week of the day a heavy user quits consuming cannabis. Withdrawal symptoms can include:
- Aggressive behavior
- Difficulty sleeping
- Abdominal pain
Addiction Treatment Program for Marijuana
Marijuana rehab program designs depend on a range of individual factors, including possible co-occurring disorders, the individual client’s therapeutic needs, personal circumstances, and preferences.
Renaissance provides a wide array of treatment options for developing a comprehensive program that ideally suits each client’s specific needs, including these, among numerous others:
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy
- Experiential therapy
- Treatment for a co-occurring disorder
- Life skills development
- Family therapy
- Relapse prevention
- Intensive Outpatient Recovery
- General Outpatient Recovery
Best Marijuana Addiction Treatment Center in Ogden, Utah
Renaissance Recovery Center, Ogden Utah offers alcohol and drug addiction treatment tailored to each of our client’s individual treatment needs and preferences.