Despite the fact that marijuana is one of the most regularly used substances in the United States, many people wonder sometimes: Is marijuana addictive? Yes, that certainly is possible. That isn’t to say that everyone who consumes weed or marijuana will develop an addiction.
Marijuana usage can lead to the development of a problem with the drug, known as a marijuana use disorder, which in extreme cases can lead to addiction. According to recent studies, 30% of marijuana users may have some form of marijuana use disorder. 18 Marijuana users under the age of 18 are four to seven times more likely than adults to develop a marijuana disorder.
Is weed or Marijuana Addictive?
Marijuana users can develop problematic usage, sometimes known as a marijuana use disorder (or marijuana addiction) in severe circumstances, according to NIDA.
The DSM-5 recognizes cannabis use disorder as a diagnosable illness. According to the DSM, those who use the drug on a regular basis may develop the same symptoms and problematic behaviors as people with other types of substance use disorders. Many persons who have a cannabis use disorder do not go on to acquire other addictions. However, certain people may battle with substance misuses, such as alcohol, cocaine, and opiates.
Marijuana addiction develops when the brain adjusts to high doses of the drug by lowering the synthesis and sensitivity of its own endocannabinoid neurotransmitters.
Signs of weed or Marijuana Addiction
Marijuana addiction, unlike other substances, is not linked to overdose fatality, but it does have major negative effects. Someone who gets addicted to or reliant on marijuana is likely to exhibit some of the traditional signs of addiction, such as:
- more and larger amounts as time goes on.
- You will devote more effort to considering how to use.
- Substance abuse will become increasingly important in their lives.
- You will devote more time and resources to obtaining more marijuana.
- If they run out, they will get angry or anxious.
- You Lose Interest in Activities
- You will deny that they have changed in the eyes of people close to them
- You Have Developed Withdrawal Symptoms
Physical dependency and withdrawal are two of the most typical symptoms of cannabis use disorder.
Most experts believe that addiction to a substance is followed by a build-up of tolerance to that substance, needing ever greater doses to get the same effects and resulting in withdrawal symptoms when the person stops using it. Most marijuana users do not develop tolerance or withdrawal symptoms.
The majority of early marijuana addiction research found that marijuana usage seldom resulted from intolerance or withdrawal. However, today’s marijuana is more potent than marijuana from the 1960s, including larger quantities of the active chemical delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which is the psychoactive component in cannabis.
Furthermore, marijuana addiction has been linked to a reduction in the capacity to respond to the neurotransmitter dopamine, which allows us to feel pleasure. In one study, those who were addicted to marijuana experienced fewer good feelings, more tension, and were more irritable.
According to current studies, tolerance to THC can develop and withdrawal symptoms can occur in certain persons. The following withdrawal symptoms have been seen in people who have used marijuana for a long time and subsequently quit:
- Anxiety and insomnia
- Loss of appetite
- Excessive salivation
- Decreased pulse
- Increased mood swings
- Increase in aggressive behavior
Some people acquire a psychological reliance on marijuana, even if they are not physically or physiologically dependent on it. This typically endures despite a person’s awareness of their addiction or desire to break free.
Why Is Marijuana Addictive?
People with marijuana use disorders frequently develop a considerable physical dependency on the substance, which means that their systems have learned to rely on the drug’s presence to operate correctly.
Withdrawal symptoms such as irritation, difficulty sleeping, cravings, lack of appetite, and restlessness may occur when a person stops using marijuana or lowers their dosage. Tolerance occurs when a user needs to consume increasing amounts of marijuana to have the intended effect, or when the user has less of an impact if they continue to use the same amount of marijuana.
A person may become dependent on marijuana for a variety of reasons. Of course, just because you have one or more of these risk factors does not indicate you will develop a marijuana addiction.
While marijuana is one of the most commonly used drugs in the United States, many people have the same question: Is marijuana addictive? The answer is yes, it can be. However, that doesn’t mean everyone who uses the substance will become addicted.
Most people who use marijuana do not become addicted to weed. They do not lose control of its use; they generally use the amount they want to use and control when they want to use it. When they use marijuana, they get the exact results they expect and intend to get.
Cannabis use disorder has a slew of long-term consequences. People with this illness have been reported to have poor cognitive performance. This might imply:
- Memory loss
- Trouble concentrating
- Decreased problem-solving skills
- Low ability to control emotions
- Difficulty making decisions
Cannabis use disorder has the potential to affect other aspects of one’s life. According to studies, people who battle with cannabis addiction experience discontent in a variety of aspects of their lives, including relationships, careers, and education.
The number of persons seeking marijuana addiction therapy has risen dramatically. According to statistics, the number of adolescents and teens receiving marijuana addiction and abuse therapy has climbed by 142% since 1992.
People who misuse marijuana, like most other drugs of abuse, generally seek treatment when the drug’s usage becomes unpleasant due to the escalating negative repercussions. Many people seek marijuana therapy because they are being pressured by family, friends, schools, jobs, or the criminal justice system.
Fortunately, cannabis use disorder may be treated in a variety of ways. Specific sorts of treatment are among them.
- Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT): A therapist will work with you to address any underlying mental health concerns, ideas, or behaviors that contribute to your addiction using cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). You and your partner come up with good coping techniques to deal with these issues.
- Contingency management: is a technique that is sometimes used in substance abuse treatment centers. It focuses on utilizing rewards to encourage positive behavior (such as refraining from marijuana use). A clinic, for example, can award tangible items as awards or even money to people who pass drug testing.
- Motivational enhancement therapy: This focuses on the internal attitudes and beliefs of a person. A therapist may assist you in developing statements that express why you want to stop smoking marijuana, and you can work together to develop an action plan to help you quit.
- Change your social environment
- Focus on the reasons you want to quit
- Engage in new hobbies