Marijuana addiction: symptoms and treatment


In this article, you will learn about the symptoms of marijuana addiction and possible treatments.

Table of contents

Marijuana is a drug that has great benefits when prescribed for medical purposes, but it can become dangerous, especially when this substance is abused.

When consumed over a long period of time, dependency, tolerance and addiction can develop. Marijuana is usually smoked to produce a relaxing effect and generate euphoria in the person.

Although there are others who prefer to eat it to prolong its effects. Regardless of the form of consumption, the person runs the risk of developing an addiction.

In this article I will tell you about some of the symptoms of marijuana addiction and its treatment.


Marijuana addiction and withdrawal symptoms

Long-term use of marijuana has addictive potential. In many cases, occasional users or "new" users do not show symptoms of addiction. However, daily and long-term use of marijuana can have addictive effects .

Therefore, suddenly stopping marijuana use involves a series of withdrawal symptoms : irritability, insomnia, poor appetite, anxiety, depression, agitation, craving (desire to consume) and mood swings.

These symptoms usually appear on the third or fourth consecutive day without consuming the substance, and then disappear after 1 or 2 weeks. Although there are some symptoms, mainly of a psychological nature, that take longer to disappear and require some type of treatment to overcome them.

Some psychological effects of marijuana use are:

  • high levels of anxiety
  • Depression
  • Loss of interest in socializing
  • Schizophrenic symptoms
  • Acute psychotic reaction

Common symptoms of marijuana addiction

The first step in overcoming marijuana addiction is acknowledging it and asking for help . Recognizing the symptoms of marijuana addiction can help determine the severity of the case.

Normally, addiction to marijuana is the result of the consumption of the substance together with other substances such as alcohol or other drugs, but these two criteria are not always met. Currently, cannabis dependence is quite common due to the large number of people who use marijuana.

Some symptoms of marijuana addiction are:

  • Marijuana tolerance : The person needs to smoke more marijuana to achieve the same rewarding effects.
  • When there is no marijuana use , withdrawal symptoms appear : the person has a physical dependence on marijuana. Some of the symptoms of this physical dependence are: upset stomach, anxiety or depression in the absence of marijuana use.
  • Out of control use: The person with addiction tries to reduce their use of marijuana, but is not able to do so. He even increases it despite not wanting to.
  • Do not practice other types of activities : the addicted person begins to spend so much time on the addiction that they do not have time to do other activities, such as sports, reading...
  • Most of the time the person is high : The addicted person begins to be high longer and longer, which interferes with his life.
  • Using marijuana despite knowing the consequences : The person has already suffered some negative consequences of their addiction, but continues to use.
  • Using marijuana to relax : becoming dependent on marijuana to be able to relax.

Reasons to stop using marijuana

People addicted to marijuana have probably thought about quitting when addiction is a problem in their lives. Here are some reasons to quit smoking weed:

  • Psychological reasons : reduced anxiety and depression. In addition, the person is able to be more relaxed and happy without the need for the substance.
  • Physical reasons : feeling better, with more energy and reduced risk of lung cancer.
  • Establish new relationships: quitting marijuana allows you to spend time getting to know people in contexts other than consumption.
  • Financial reasons : the money that was invested in the consumption of marijuana can be used for other purposes.
  • Legal Reasons – The addicted person can stay out of trouble with the law.

How to overcome marijuana addiction: treatment

If you're addicted to marijuana and have decided it's time to quit, there are a few steps you can take to start your life's recovery.

Overcoming marijuana addiction can be very difficult because it involves changing your life. You probably have anxiety and depression , and have changed your group of friends due to substance use.

Addiction took you down another path and with treatment you must change direction.

Here are some options for overcoming your addiction :

  • Rehabilitation : This is usually the most common method of treatment for addictions. At first, the person must go to the center daily, to later increase the period of time between sessions (weekly, monthly). In these sessions, group or individual therapy is carried out with the aim, among others, of recognizing and avoiding those situations that trigger the person's addiction.
  • Inpatient rehabilitation: generally, in cases of marijuana it is not necessary for the person to be admitted to a center, except in those cases in which the addiction co-occurs with a mental disorder or with another addiction.
  • Behavioral therapy: there are people who decide to smoke because they are bored or need a stimulus to cheer themselves up. Behavioral therapy can teach these people how to overcome their addiction through changes in their behavior. These positive changes will be aimed at making the person more productive and carry out rewarding activities that stimulate him without resorting to drugs.
  • Cognitive therapy – This method of treatment will help the addict to think in a way that does not facilitate tobacco use. For example, it would work to change thoughts such as " to relax, the only thing I can do is consume marijuana."
  • Community Reinforcement – ​​Many people who use marijuana have trouble feeling good or happy without using drugs due to chemical changes in the brain caused by addiction. Community reinforcement programs can help provide the person with a reward for meeting recovery goals, such as not smoking for a month, or for making a series of commitments and sticking to them.
  • Self-help groups: there are many self-help groups that follow recovery models based on steps or phases that the addict must go through to rebuild his life without addictions.

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Disclaimer: This article is purely informative, I have no authority to make a diagnosis or recommend treatment. I invite you to visit a psychologist to treat your particular case.