Many people are familiar with marijana, also known as “pot,” “weed.” “bud,” and “ganja.” Because of its availability and affordability, it’s often the first street drug that individuals encounter. Marijuana is a psychoactive drug which has properties of a depressant, stimulant, as well as a hallucinogen.
The main psychoactive chemical in marijuana, THC (short for delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol) comes from the female cannabis plants. This chemical compound is responsible for the “high” that accompanies marijuana use, no matter how it’s administered.
While the most common way of using marijuana involves smoking it through a hand-rolled cigarette known as a joint, or through a water pipe known as a bong, other options have grown in popularity.
For example, many people prefer to inhale it through a vaporizer (i.e., a vape pen). Also, edible marijuana is increasingly popular, as the psychoactive compounds are incorporated into foods like candies, cookies, and other items. Stronger types of marijuana can be developed by isolating the female plants and concentrating the resin, to create hash (or hashish) oil, a waxy “budder” substance or a hard candy-like “shatter.”
Each year, there are approximately 2.6 million new users of marijuana in the U.S. With its growing availability, more and more people are relying on marijuana on a daily basis.
Any drug — including marijuana — becomes addictive when it causes negative situations, but you still can’t stop. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, 9% of people who use marijuana will come to depend on it; of those who start using marijuana in their teens, 17% will become dependent.
To be clear, marijuana isn’t as addictive as many other drugs, it can still lead to addiction and withdrawal symptoms, including sleep disturbances, mood disorders, cravings, poor appetite, restlessness and irritability.
In clinical research studies, THC was shown to change neural pathways in the brain, creating a necessity for the substance to ensure functioning. Other studies have suggested that using marijuana in adolescence is often associated with drug abuse and as an adult.
It’s not always easy to tell if you or someone you care about is capable of using marijuana recreationally, or if that use is a disorder. Here are a few signs to consider:
If these patterns seem familiar to you, don’t panic. Hope Canyon has experience dealing with cannabis and marijuana dependence, and we can help you too.
While there is no particular medication to treat marijuana addiction, our medically supervised detox can help to manage withdrawal symptoms such as sleeplessness. Meanwhile, therapeutic treatments such as cognitive behavioral therapy have proven to be highly effective in treating marijuana abuse and dependence. Here at Hope Canyon, we’ve seen it work well for many of our clients.
If you’re ready to put marijuana use behind you, we’re here to help make it happen. Simply call or click to get in touch, and Hope Canyon will get you started on the road to recovery now.