The availability of marijuana due to the changes in the state laws has also led to the increase in its use. Sometimes, it doesn’t really matter if it is legal or illegal. There are still people who may abuse it. It has been found that thirty percent of people who are using marijuana are exhibiting some features of marijuana use disorder.
1. What is Marijuana Addiction
Marijuana addiction is something that most people downplay. But the reality is that this type of addiction can also cause problems to people. Chronic and heavy use of marijuana leads to the development of a cannabis use disorder. To understand this condition better, let us look into the content of marijuana. It contains tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) which has a primary psychoactive component. This component of marijuana is what is responsible for addiction and becoming high. And just like other drugs out there, the effect to individuals may differ according to their psychological and their physical features.
2. Symptoms of Marijuana Addiction:
The symptoms of marijuana addiction can be classified into two, physical and behavioral.
a. Physical Symptoms
There are some physical symptoms that can help you determine marijuana addiction. First, you will notice an increase in appetite and increase in heart rate. Aside from that, it can also result in a dry mouth and having red eyes. It can also result in changes in perception and some problems with cognition. There are also times when marijuana addiction affects the time perception of the person.
b. Behavioral Symptoms
Mood change is another symptom of marijuana addiction. There are other short-term behavioral symptoms that you can observe. The person may have hallucinations, paranoia, delusions and psychosis. If psychosis becomes worse, it may lead to schizophrenia.
3. The Effects of Marijuana:
Here is a list of the short-term and long term effects of marijuana:
a. Daily cough and phlegm production
This is one of the immediate effects of smoking marijuana. Whenever you inhale cannabis, your sensory nerves reflexively react and produce phlegm. This will then lead to coughing.
b. Risk of lung infections
Our first line of defense that will help you with infection is your lungs. However, marijuana smoking may lead to its damage as it kills cells. As it causes irritation to the throat and lungs, it may increase the risk of having lung infections.
c. Damage to the immune system
Your immune system is in charge of defending your body from damage and the spread of toxins. The THC content of marijuana can impair the immune system. CBD and THC are known as immunosuppressants.
Some people use marijuana to detach themselves from depression. However, they show depressive symptoms when they become heavily dependent. This is also linked with increased psychiatric disorders.
There can be a positive effect if CBD and THC are going to be used at low levels. It can help in the temporary reduction of symptoms of anxiety. However, addiction can lead to a more complex symptom of anxiety and panic if abused.
4. Treatment for Marijuana Addiction:
For people who are ready to have a sober life, here are the available treatments for marijuana addiction:
a. Cognitive-behavioral therapy
This is categorized as psychotherapy. This is a strategy that can help people improve their self-control. It can help them correct problematic behaviors such as drug use. This is very important in identifying the problems that need to be addressed to stop the addiction.
b. Motivational enhancement therapy
This is a therapy that is provided in most rehab centers that does not really focus on treating but in providing motivation. This is an intervention that will help in mobilizing the internal resources of the person. This will then lead to internal change that will prepare the person for treatment.
c. Motivational incentives
This is something that is founded on the idea that people are motivated when they receive incentives. This type of reinforcement can be applied to marijuana addiction. This is because the person will then focus on the form of reward he will be able to achieve when he decides to avoid the negative action.
The issue in every substance abuse problem is the cravings and the withdrawal symptom that comes with it. This is where meditation therapy comes in, which is offered in numerous inpatient drug rehab centers, and especially in luxury rehabs. The benefits of meditation can help achieve self-control and peace. This is one thing that most people who are into addiction must first possess to be able to free themselves from the destructive phase.
Marijuana addiction, just like any other substance addiction, is something that can be treated. It does not matter if the person has been addicted for years or months. Guidance and proper treatment are the factors that can be very helpful in the healing and sobering process. The involvement of the family members in the process to sober is something that is expected. People who are into addiction need the assurance and the love of the people around them. The reason for the addiction is the craving for peace and satisfaction. This is something that can be provided by family members and friends.