Is Pot Addictive?

Marijuana Addiction Treatment

Marijuana is one of the most commonly abused substances in the world, and the most commonly used illicit substance in the United States. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, more than 11 million young adults age 18-25 use marijuana in a given month. In recent years, marijuana has become legalized for recreational use, permitted for medical use, and has seen a rise in potency. In 2015, over 4 million Americans met diagnostic criteria for a marijuana use disorder, pointing toward the risk of addiction to this drug.

What is Marijuana?

Marijuana is the name of the buds of the plants cannabis sativa and cannabis indica. The female plants contain tetrahydracannabinol, commonly known as THC. This is the strongest psychoactive compound, but marijuana contains over 65 known cannabinoids in addition to THC. It's most often smoked, and many people vape or eat it. Marijuana has many names, and is most commonly referred to as pot, weed, grass, 420, cannabis, ganja, herb, and bud. There are also specific names for methods of consumption such as joints, bongs, blunts, and vapes.


Often perceived as safe and non-addictive, people can develop cannabis use disorder, which is characterized by the continued use of marijuana despite negative consequences like stress, mental impairment, or social problems. This often manifests in people using marijuana even when problems are arising in their personal lives or social lives as a result of regular use. Research also suggests that marijuana may worsen mental health disorders like depression, bipolar disorder, and paranoid schizophrenia.

marijuana addiction treatmentSigns of Marijuana Abuse

There are many signs of marijuana abuse that you may see in yourself or in someone near you. It's good to know the signs of a marijuana high, and the symptoms of regular or longer term use. Some common effects of marijuana use in the short-term are:

  • Euphoria (feeling of pleasure)
  • Sense of relaxation and ease
  • Sleepiness and fatigue
  • Distortion in time perception
  • Dry mouth (known as "cotton mouth")
  • Poor motor skills and reflexes
  • Increased appetite (known as the "munchies")
  • Reddened eyes
  • Changes in heart rates
  • Difficulty thinking and with short-term memory
  • Paranoia and anxiety

The symptoms that one may experience depend on various factors. Different strains of marijuana may cause different effects. Indica strains tend to be more relaxing, while sativa strains tend to be more uplifting and energizing. Effects of marijuana use may also vary depending on the length of use, how much pot is smoked, and your individual body chemistry. When used for longer periods, users may develop a variety of side effects. These include:

  • Poor performance in school and work
  • Addiction (9% of people who smoke in teen years become addicted)
  • Decrease in motor skill and coordination
  • Lack of motivation and willpower
  • Weight gain or loss
  • Anxiety and panic attacks
  • Depression
  • Irritability and anger
  • Sudden changes in mood

Again, every individual is unique, and the signs of regular marijuana use differ from person to person. Some people immediately struggle with school or work, while others are able to function at a relatively high level. There is not one single set of side effects to watch for, as marijuana use may cause different symptoms in different people.

Can I Get Addicted to Pot?

Marijuana is often considered by the general population to be safe and non-addictive. The truth is that many people develop cannabis use disorder, or addiction. Like many other substances and behaviors marijuana can impact our dopamine reward pathways and create addiction. When somebody becomes addicted to marijuana, they will experience symptoms of withdrawal upon cessation. Furthermore, people who become addicted are likely to change behaviors. Things that were previously enjoyable or rewarding are no longer as interesting. This may result in less interest in school, work, social life, and other things which once brought us pleasure.

It's important to know that marijuana is indeed addictive. Many people use marijauna without developing addiction, but the potential is there. Many people who become addicted to marijuana start using in their teen years, and longer-term use increases the risk of developing an addiction. If you or someone you know smokes pot regularly, it may be worth seeking professional help to investigate the potential for addiction to arise.

Marijuana Withdrawal and Detox

When you think of detox and withdrawal, you may think of drugs like heroin or benzos. Stopping use of marijuana can also result in a psychological and physical reaction. Marijuana withdrawal may consist of a number of unpleasant symptoms, and depends on the user, length of use, individual body chemistry, the presence of any mental health disorders such as depression or anxiety. Common symptoms of marijuana withdrawal include:

  • Anxiety and/or panic attacks
  • Headaches
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Irritability and agitation
  • Mood swings
  • Difficult sleeping
  • Sweating and chills
  • Troubles with digestion
  • Changes in appetite
  • Muscle soreness and fatigue
  • Craving to use drugs

To help with these symptoms, Crownview Co-Occurring Institute offers detox services for those coming off marijuana. Although the withdrawal process doesn't usually dictate the need for medical care and medications, it is best to have professional care to help you get the drugs out of your system. With trained professionals caring for you, you are offered the best opportunity at recovering and leading a life without marijuana. Relapse rates are significantly lower among addicts who seek help from licensed addiction facilities.

Rehab for Marijuana Dependency

Addiction treatment for marijuana use helps individuals to build a life of recovery without drugs. Through various therapeutic offerings, we will work with you to prevent relapse, strengthen coping mechanisms, and learn to face life in a new way. Unfortuantely, many people experience depression after quitting weed, as marijuana can cause dopamine deficiency in the brain. Getting sober from marijuana involves building a new way of living, and a marijuana addiction treatment center like Crownview will help you to create the life you want.



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