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Can ‘Weed’ Be Addictive?

Weed, pot, dope, and marijuana are all different names for the same drug that comes from the cannabis plant. Weed can be consumed in many forms. It can be smoked; you can vape it, eat it, or drink it. Most people consume weed for pleasure or recreation; however, a growing number of medical professionals are prescribing medical marijuana for specific conditions and symptoms. Weed or marijuana tends to have a reputation as a relatively harmless drug. Therefore, there has been a push to legalize its use throughout the United States in recent years. At the same time, researchers are beginning to learn more and more about the effects that weed has on both the brain and the body, and many additional questions about whether weed can be addictive are now being asked.

Marijuana Use Disorder Explained

Frequent marijuana use can lead to problem use, otherwise known as marijuana use disorder. In some severe cases, this can turn into an addiction. Marijuana use disorders are often associated with dependence. This means that you feel withdrawal symptoms when not using it. When someone uses weed frequently, they often report feelings of irritability, mood and sleep changes, decreased appetite, cravings, and other various forms of discomfort within the first weeks and days after not using. Marijuana use disorder (or addiction to weed) develops when your brain adapts to large amounts of the drug resulting in changes to how the brain releases essential chemicals that transmit messages throughout the body. As with many addictions, frequent use of weed typically interferes with many aspects of your life, yet you find yourself unable to stop using without some form of assistance or addiction treatment. 

How to Get Help with A Weed Addiction

Despite the increasing number of states where weed is legal, marijuana remains the most frequently abused drug in the United States. It accounts for just under 20% of admissions to addiction treatment programs all over the country. However, it can be difficult for friends and family or even the person with an addiction to know when and how to seek treatment. These challenges are compounded by an attempt to understand if marijuana can be addictive. It is important to note that an addiction to weed does not indicate weakness, wrongdoing, or a sign that someone is a bad person. It means you or a loved one have a medical condition that responds exceptionally well to treatment. 

As the stigma around addiction treatment begins to decline, so do the concerns often associated with seeking addiction treatment. Although marijuana may not be physically addictive in the same way as other drugs like alcohol or heroin, the psychological addiction related to weed can be equally as powerful.   

Therapy is the cornerstone of treatment for marijuana addiction. The goal of therapy is to provide you with the essential tools you can use to avoid or cope with drug use triggers and avoid relapse. These tools can help you throughout your recovery when you, inevitably, find a situation that reminds you of using. Therapy is also essential to the development of problem-solving skills you can use to build a strong, healthy life post-treatment that doesn’t require the use of weed.

Seek Treatment at Bayshore Retreat

There is no right or wrong time to fight back against a marijuana use disorder. Weed is a powerful drug that can be addictive. Everyone has their unique reasons for seeking help. Deciding to receive treatment for marijuana use can be challenging, but it is the first, essential step on the road to recovery. The important thing is to remember that defeating marijuana addiction is possible. Take control of your life today at Bayshore Retreat.