Marijuana addiction is the uncontrollable drive to possess and use marijuana. Many people suffer this form of addiction without realizing it. The widespread daily use of marijuana has increased steadily since the 1960s. More and more people regularly smoke ‘the weed’ but say they are not addicted. This denial along with the popularised notion marijuana is not physically addictive has led millions of people with a serious addiction to go untreated. The only way to help these people understand they are in fact addicted is to give them a clear example of how marijuana addiction manifests itself.
People who are addicted to marijuana tend to behave in a particular way. They are often obsessed with the herb. Marijuana is a popular topic of their daily conversation. They talk about where to get it, how powerful their herb is, who has the most for your money, the amount and power of the ‘weed’ they had yesterday and if everyone present wants to put their money together to get some now. Many people only become aware they are addicted to marijuana when they are forced, because of employment, incarceration or some other social impetus, to go without it. At that point they either seek help or more marijuana.
A popular reason most people never question whether or not they are addicted to marijuana is because they think it is harmless. Nothing could be further from the truth. Marijuana has a number of negative effects on the body and the mind. Marijuana use can lead to lung cancer, repertory illnesses, heart attack and stroke. It can disrupt the brain’s chemical balance and affect one’s memory and the ability to learn new things. Excessive marijuana use can also lead to reproductive issues and depression.
Treatment for marijuana addiction requires determination and a combination of therapies. They include education, behavior therapy, some medication and detoxification. Some people require in-patient treatment where they learn about addiction, recovery and relapse. They also learn about lifestyle changes and coping tools. The therapeutic environment and the support system it provides can help to address emotional and mental issues associated with marijuana abuse. For the treatment to be effective the abuser must commit to at least 90 days of treatment. Participation in a 12-step program once out of the rehabilitation center increases the chance of long term success.
Marijuana use can be dangerous. If you use it, get help immediately!