18 Oct Marijuana Addiction: What You Should Know
Treating Your Marijuana Dependence
Marijuana dependence occurs when the brain adapts to large amounts of the drug by reducing production of and sensitivity to its endocannabinoid neurotransmitters. Cannabinoids are transmitted into the brain and are ways to alter the mind, which is precisely what Marijuana does, and to many, is the desired effect. So when the brain stops producing its own, the only rational response to someone using marijuana is to continue use to achieve the result or “escape” that is so desirable to them.
Many believe that an addiction to Marijuana is not a “real thing” and that it isn’t like other drugs, but they couldn’t be farther from the truth. In fact, Marijuana is very addictive; the effects are just relatively minimal in comparison to “hard” drugs. Take Xanax for example. The withdrawals from Xanax are so powerful once someone stops taking them that someone can die from it. With Marijuana, something such as that isn’t in the picture, as the repercussions of Marijuana are far less physically taxing. But don’t let that fool you.
Weed Legalization and Substance Use Disorder
Marijuana use now being legalized in individual states has become very casual and socially acceptable, but many people abuse the drug and become addicted. For many, using Marijuana is simply a social thing. At parties, with friends, you name it. But many people take it too far, and the main demographic that abuses it ranges from the ages of 16-20. High schools and colleges are where the majority of the damage takes place, and a few key indicators can show anybody when it is becoming more severe.
As I stated earlier, Marijuana is a social drug, it always has been, and it always will be, and many people that start to smoke by themselves are at the start of a bad habit. People who smoke by themselves are no longer smoking to have fun with a group of people or to be social; they are now in an entirely different realm. They are smoking for one of a few different reasons. One is to gain an appetite and eat, and this is dangerous in itself because with enough of this ones natural appetite is very minimal. Leading to someone having to smoke to be able to eat, which is a clear sign someone is abusing Marijuana if they cannot eat unless they smoke and get high first. Another reason is to sleep, and this can have the same effect on the body as eating would. Your body will be so used to smoking before bed that many people cannot sleep if they aren’t high. This again is another indicator that abuse is taking place.
The biggest reason and indicator of abuse with Marijuana is for the “escape.” Many people use Marijuana because they are stressed out, upset, sad, anxious, scared, you name it. And it gets really easy to see that once someone is smoking for these reasons, it ends up consuming all of one’s day, having to be high all the time. No longer to have fun with friends, although that still might happen on occasion. But more often than not that won’t be the reason they are choosing to smoke. By being able to escape one doesn’t have to feel, and that is a very desired feeling from people abusing drugs. It comes without saying that whenever someone is high all the time, no matter how much they say everything is alright, it’s likely it’s not. Nobody smokes all day long just to feel high, its to escape the current moment and not have to live life. It’s a perfect way not to have to take any responsibility for life.
Financial Impact of Pot Abuse
Money also begins to be spent on all the wrong things. Rather than tending to one’s body and taking care of oneself, financial spending goes to picking up more Marijuana, buying paraphernalia, and doing whatever needs to happen to get more money. Food starts to take a backseat on spending money, and an addict would rather get high than eat, as the need to escape is all too tempting, and to some necessity.
You will see with people who abuse marijuana that motivation and productivity are at a low. Many students will start to not show up to class, do poorly on assignments, and will lose care in the important parts of life as pot, is all they care about and focus on. And many kids that are addicted won’t admit it, as they don’t think anything is wrong since many others their age are doing the same thing. But to people on the outside looking in, it will be clear due to the habits and mannerisms they possess.
People who are addicted are very motivated to get high and will go to extremes and make irrational decisions to be able to get more weed. Stealing is a big one, as many will steal money or pawn miscellaneous items to be able to get more money to purchase more weed with. And if this isn’t happening, they could even be selling it themselves to get money and consistently be partaking in illegal activity.
Within the recovery community of drugs and alcohol, more and more people are beginning to get help from addictions to marijuana. It is slowly but surely being recognized as a problem. In 2015 over 4 million people got help through outpatient programs and sober livings purely from an addiction to pot, and the number continues to grow. And to the average person wondering if they or a loved one is in need, the indicators stated in this article are clear signs of a substance abuse problem.
Marijuana seems to be so innocent to many, but it isn’t. With its crazy ability to take all motivation and drive out of people, it can do damage to a vast majority of people. And with the potency levels of marijuana getting stronger and stronger, it is only getting worse. Marijuana addiction is alive and real in the world, so watch out for it and help those in need.