Many doubt as to whether marijuana is an additive or harmful substance. It is indeed addictive and many seek treatment due to marijuana addiction. Those that become addicted to marijuana use habitually and heavily, affecting their quality of life. When trying to stop on their own, they are unable to, which leads them to seek a marijuana rehabilitation center.
Marijuana is an herb that produces psychoactive effects. It originally was grown as a source of medication. Although still used medicinally, it is considered more as a street drug. Common street names for marijuana include “cannabis”, “weed”, “herb”, “Mary Jane”, “grass”, “pot”, and “reefer”.
The effects of marijuana are immediate after usage. The duration of the high can last anywhere from one to three hours. If consumed by food, the high takes long to come into effect but lasts much longer. After inhaling marijuana, hear rate increases, bronchial passages expand, and pupils dilate. When THC enters the brain, the user begins to feel high or euphoria. THC awakens brain cells that release chemical dopamine.
Marijuana can be smoked, either through a pipe or bong, or rolled in cigarette papers. Another method is to smoke a “blunt”, which is a mixture of tobacco and weed rolled up in a cigar wrap. With this method, harmful chemicals, marijuana and tobacco, are mixed together. Marijuana can also be eaten in the form of edibles. Eating marijuana is thought to be four to five times more potent than regular THC. The effects produced are not immediately but can take anywhere from forty minutes to an hour to produce effects. Marijuana can also be brewed in with tea. Lastly, another common method is in the form of hash oil. It is a more potent and desirable way of smoking marijuana.
Under the influence of marijuana, one may feel that time is slowing down, colors may seem more vibrant and bright, sounds may be more intense, dry mouth, hungry, or very thirsty. As the effects ware off, a sudden sense of exhaustion or depression may occur. Long-term effects may include impaired memory, decreased ability to comprehend, develop bronchitis, and increased risk of cancer to the head, neck, and lungs.
Marijuana addiction is a mental obsession to either have or be using the drug. Long-term usage of the drug can lead to marijuana addiction. Often times, users or addicts may find themselves smoking weed alone, or begin selling the drug illegally. Addiction symptoms, including the mental and physical cravings, create difficulty when attempting to quit using marijuana.
When one finds they are smoking marijuana habitually, are becoming dependent on the drug, or are just noticing addictive behaviors towards marijuana, they are showing addiction symptoms. Becoming obsessed or dependent on weed alone is dangerous because it can lead to other drugs or harder drug use. As statistics have shown, marijuana is a gateway drug.
With marijuana addiction, the most common and effective treatment is behavioral interventions. There also are a number of family and outpatient groups that focus specifically on marijuana substance addiction. Inpatient treatment centers focus on helping addicts learn their addictive behaviors, regardless of the substance used.