Common Signs Of Marijuana Abuse
About one in six people who start using marijuana as adolescents, and up to half of people who use marijuana daily, eventually become addicted to it. Addiction means that a person cant stop using marijuana even though it interferes with many aspects of their life.
Given that marijuana can have a range of different effects depending on how its used, its not surprising that the outward signs of addiction can vary widely among individuals.
Even so, most young people who abuse marijuana demonstrate a combination of effects, including:
Who Is At Risk For Cannabis Dependence
Its important to note that adolescent consumers and people with co-occurring disorders or who could benefit from some degree of mental health treatment are going to be more prone to long-term cannabis dependence.
Many U.S. citizens turn to antidepressants, anti-anxiety, and other meds to cope with these symptoms, regulate moods or enhance focus. Self-medicating cannabis users are just as prone as anyone else is to abuse, especially because of the herbs lack of dangerous side effects.
NIH also found that when one shifts from using more harmful drugs to marijuana that this can also play a part in cannabis dependency if the underlying issue isnt treated. In addition, NIH suggests that those who pick up the cannabis habit before the age of 18 are four to seven times more likely to develop a marijuana use disorder than adults.
A Few Options For Family Members Of An Addict:
- If in immediate danger, call 9-1-1
- Seek out a local therapist or counselor
- Seek out a minister or pastor
- Seek out a local co-dependents anonymous group
Life is what we make of it. If we choose to let addiction consume us, our children, and our entire lives, it is as if we confine ourselves to lives of imprisonment. Hope is only but a footstep away. Admitting there is a problem and asking for help is the first step toward recovery.
Help Is Available
If you are located in the United States, contact the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration national helpline at 1-800-662-4357 for information or treatment referral.
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Are There Medications Available To Help If I Am Addicted To Marijuana
Currently, there are no medications approved by the Food and Drug Administration to treat cannabis use disorder. Some medications have been studied to help with treating withdrawal symptoms that may come with stopping marijuana:
These may help improve symptoms like inability to sleep, irritability, and anxiousness. However, none of these have been studied extensively enough or have good enough evidence to be approved by the FDA at this point. Additionally, an over-the-counter supplement, N-acetylcysteine, has been studied for its potential to lessen withdrawal symptoms by stopping the breakdown of the bodys own endocannabinoids.
Some behavioral treatments can be effective in treating marijuana use disorder. These include:
Cognitive behavioral therapy
Motivational enhancement therapy
Talk with your healthcare provider if you would like to learn more about your options for treatment.
Masking Emotions & Denying The Problem
Do you smoke pot to relax? Are you smoking pot to cover up a negative emotion such as sadness that you dont particularly want to deal with? Has your loved one confronted you about being addicted to marijuana and youve denied that there is a problem with what you are doing? One of the signs of marijuana addiction that you should be on the lookout for is related to how you use marijuana. If youre using it to cover up your emotions or if you deny that you have a problem despite interruptions that have resulted from your use of marijuana, you are likely addicted.
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Move Past Any Denial You May Have About The Addiction
To successfully address your spouse’s addiction, you need to confront it head-on. You may not know how to do that if the situation has been ongoing for months or years, and you’ve been in denial about the problem from the beginning. Remember that there’s no time like the present if you continue to deny the problem, it won’t go away on its own.
What To Do If You Smoke Laced Weed
In general, if you feel symptoms that make you worried or uncomfortable, you should seek medical help. You cant die from a , but you can overdose on other drugs commonly mixed with marijuana.
If youre with someone sober, ask the person to take you to the hospital. If you dont have a safe ride, call a or a poison help line for assistance. These services provide help for people experiencing unpleasant side effects or .
Its impossible for most people to determine whats in the drugs that they buy on the street. Even legal marijuana can contain unsafe contaminants. Laced weed isnt common, but it does exist. Anyone who buys weed on the street is at risk for getting a bad batch.
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Effects Of Synthetic Marijuana Withdrawal And Overdose
Effects of synthetic marijuana withdrawal: Should a person use and/or abuse K2 over a long period of time, it is likely that that individual will experience symptoms of withdrawal after ceasing his or her use of this harmful substance. The following examples of K2 withdrawal symptoms:
- Chills or hot flashes
- Cravings for continued usage of synthetic marijuana
Effects of synthetic marijuana overdose: Should a person display the following signs of overdose following the use of synthetic marijuana, it is imperative that medical attention is sought as soon as possible so as to prevent a grave outcome:
What Does Marijuana Abuse Look Like
Have you ever been in a situation where your loved one was extremely stressed or frustrated and the only thing that could calm them down was smoking weed? Or have you noticed that they smoke a blunt before each meal and even before they go to sleep? Its easy to make excuses and believe that marijuana addictions dont exist. If your loved one needs marijuana to complete basic, everyday tasks, it is time to pay attention to the other signs.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, 30% of people actively using marijuana develop a marijuana abuse disorder. Not everyone who smokes weed becomes addicted. Many people only smoke socially and are able to stop. There are some people, however, with underlying factors that can increase their risk for developing a marijuana abuse disorder:
- Mental health conditions such as depression, anxiety, PTSD, or schizophrenia
- Family history of substance abuse
- Genetically predisposed to developing addictions
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The Effects Of Marijuana
The effects of being high on marijuana can vary significantly from person to person. For some people, the impact may be minimal and may simply leave them feeling relaxed. Other people may have sensory perception experiences. While many people use marijuana because it allows them to experience pleasant feelings, this isnt the case for everyone. Some people experience anxiety, a sense of panic, paranoia, or hallucinations while using marijuana.
If someone ingests marijuana in food or drink, it typically takes longer for it to affect them as the process of entering the bloodstream through the stomach is slower than through the lungs.
If you see warning signs of marijuana use such as red eyes, delayed reaction times and increased appetite, you might want to have a conversation with the person and determine whether or not a problem exists. Many people dont feel like marijuana use is a problem.
Having a is similar to other addictions, but it may be easier for people who participate in treatment to overcome their use of marijuana. There are many forms of treatment available to help people stop using marijuana, including cognitive-behavioral therapy, therapeutic management of behavior, and motivational interviewing. Qualified medical or mental health professionals may also be able to help you identify potential treatment options, particularly if the person you suspect is on marijuana is a minor.
Smoking Weed To Relax
At the end of the day, do you have to smoke a joint in order to calm down? If you or a loved one turns to weed consistently as a means of relaxation and seemingly cannot relax without pot, there could be a more prevalent problem present with marijuana addiction. Symptoms such as this often persist and, contrary to common belief, marijuana does not actually relax, sooth or calm. In fact, the Office of National Drug Control Policy confirms that marijuana does not promote relaxation but actually increases violent crimes.
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What Are The Signs Of Addiction
Marijuana use can bring about a variety of unintended consequences. Whether the substance is used infrequently or in large amounts for extended periods, negative effects can occur.
Problematic signs of marijuana use include:
- Thinking problems. When use begins as a teen, marijuana affects the way the brain develops. This can reduce the way one thinks, learns, and solves problems. In the short term, it can impair decision-making skills and decreased coordination. In the long term, the substance is related to lower intelligence, as measured by IQ tests.
- Physical health problems. Smoking the substance can lead to a list of lung-related issues including chronic respiratory illness and cough. Additionally, all marijuana use can result in higher heart rate for up to 3 hours after usepotentially increasing likelihood of a heart attack and other cardiac issues in some individuals.
- Mental health problems. Paranoia, hallucinations, and disorganized thinking are just a few of the negative effects that can happen during use. Long-term use can lead to higher incidence of depression, anxiety, and thoughts of suicide, especially in teenagers. Marijuana use has even been linked to the exacerbation of psychotic symptoms in those with schizophrenia.
Other signs of marijuana addiction include:
- Lack of motivation.
Physical & Psychological Signs Of Marijuana Use
The physical and psychological signs of marijuana use are the same as the side effects the user will experience. Most often, these effects are temporary and may only last up to a few hours. For this reason, parents may not have an opportunity to notice the physical side effects of marijuana use when children use marijuana away from home.
Some children may use marijuana at home or return home before the effects have fully worn away. It is important to know the physical side effects, which range in severity, but can include:
- Red eyes
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Am I Addicted To Weed
Weed addiction is a lot more common than most people think. If youre concerned about the amount of marijuana you or a loved one is currently smoking, and think theres a chance there might be an addiction problem, it may be time to answer some tough questions.
The best way to tackle a problem is head-on, and being honest with yourself about your addiction. So if youre asking yourself am I addicted to weed, then you have arrived at the right website to help you answer that.
Somewhere around 5 to 10 per cent of people who smoke marijuana at some point in their lives will eventually become addicted. This is a dependency that can gradually creep up over time, and before you know it, youre always thinking about your next smoke, or where to buy more weed.
With that in mind, weve put together a simple test you can take to determine if you have a weed addiction that must be addressed.
Addiction Treatment For Marijuana Abuse
Sometimes, quitting marijuana is difficult to do alone. If you cant seem to quit weed cold turkey, you may want to seek professional help to cease marijuana use. American Addiction Centers offers multiple forms of treatment to help those abusing marijuana that helps patients gain the skills to cope with craving and avoid their triggers. Therapy also helps improve on other skills, such as problem-solving and lifestyle management.
Addiction treatment providers may use several behavioral treatments to help those struggling with marijuana use, such as:
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy. Cognitive behavioral therapy is a form of behavioral therapy that focuses on treating a variety of mental health issues under the assumption that many problematic behaviors are borne from unhealthy thought patterns. With CBT, one can identify their negative thought patterns, learn healthier ways to cope with their emotions, and observe their negative thought patterns.9
- Contingency management. Contingency management is a form of treatment that utilizes incentive and reward to reinforce healthy changes in an individual. When treated through a contingency management method, providers may give patients tangible rewards that reinforce their positive behaviors .
- Motivational enhancement therapy. Motivational enhancement therapy strives to resolve any ambivalence toward treatment and prompt an internally-motivated desire to change in people suffering from substance abuse issues.10
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How To Help Someone Who Is Addicted To Marijuana
Either a person who is abusing marijuana is able to quit smoking or they cant. If they can, then helping them becomes mostly a matter of finding alternative solutions to the problems that the marijuana use seemed to solve for them. This may include helping them set meaningful goals for themselves and encouraging them on their way to the accomplishment of those goals.
For a person to start using a drug like marijuana, there had to be some problems in life that marijuana seemed to help with. Social shyness? School problems? Abuse? Difficulty holding a job? Difficulty learning? Or simply boredom? If you can find out what problems seemed to go away when the drug was used, then you may be able to support the person as they learn the skills they need to overcome that problem. Isolating the problem through can go a long way to reducing the pain associated with it. Knowing ones friends or family supports you as you learn to these difficulties can go make one feel less isolated.
Tolerance & Lack Of Control
The first real sign that you have succumbed to an addiction to marijuana comes when you develop a tolerance to the drug and, despite your goal to moderate your marijuana use, you have lost control over your drug use. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, marijuana use is also linked to mental illness so if youve lost control over your use of pot, consider seeking prompt treatment to ensure your safety.
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Take Our Substance Abuse Self
Take our free, 5-minute substance abuse self-assessment below if you think you or someone you love might be struggling with substance abuse. The evaluation consists of 11 yes or no questions that are intended to be used as an informational tool to assess the severity and probability of a substance use disorder. The test is free, confidential, and no personal information is needed to receive the result.
Tobacco Smoking Among Marijuana Users
Like users of other drugs of abuse, regular marijuana users have a higher rate of tobacco use than the general population approximately 50 percent of heavy cannabis users also smoke tobacco . Moreover, many adolescents and, to a lesser extent, adults use tobacco and marijuana together, either mixing the substances, smoking blunts , or smoking one immediately after the other.
At least one study suggests that, among cannabis-dependent individuals, tobacco smokers have worse psychosocial problems and poorer cannabis cessation outcomes . Whether this indicates that treatments for marijuana dependence should simultaneously address tobacco smoking is not clear. No clinical studies have focused on this issue. However, research suggests that treatment that promotes smoking cessation does not disrupt alcohol abstinence and may actually enhance the likelihood of longer-term sobriety .
Should we encourage individuals trying to quit marijuana use to try also to quit tobacco? Certainly we should discuss this option with clients, as tobacco abstinence may make marijuana abstinence easier and increase chances of maintaining marijuana abstinence for a longer term. However, as with treatments for other substance dependence disorders, mandating tobacco cessation as a treatment goal might create a barrier to treatment seeking or trigger treatment dropout.
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Crime And Deviant Behavior
- Have you ever manipulated a doctor to attain prescription drugs?
- Have you ever used substances without knowing what they were or what they would do to you?
- Have you ever stolen substances or stolen something to pay for substances?
- Have you acted erratically or felt not in control of your actions?
Addiction often drives reasonable individuals to uncharacteristic behavior and, in many cases, even crime. Faking a health condition to obtain prescription drugs, stealing from friends or family, and taking unknown substances are common among individuals struggling with addiction. If you find yourself acting out of character, committing crimes or doing things that hurt loved ones to satisfy your substance use habits, you likely have an addiction.
How Do I Know If I’m Addicted To Cannabis
Culturally and scientifically, weeds general harmlessness makes it difficult for dependent users to view it as a problem. This may make it even harder to quit if necessary, especially for the long-term user.
Here are some guidelines to determine whether marijuana dependence is something you should be concerned about:
- Youre irritable, anxious or unable to function without cannabis, you may be addicted.
- You always blow through your weed quickly. Especially if you intended only to take a couple of hits, or just smoke before bedtime and you never seem to be able to accomplish this.
- You cant afford your habit. If youre spending money that you dont really have or youre buying bud multiple times per week .
- Your productivity decreases. If youre struggling at work, in school or cant otherwise meet your daily obligations due to your consumption of weed, this is also a telltale sign.
- If youre missing out on activities, employment opportunities and more because you cant get high.
- If your habit regularly gets you into trouble .
If your behavior falls into any of the above signs, it may mean that youve lost some control over your cannabis consumption. Remember, developing an addiction to anything simply means its time to confront the issues you may be facing, rather than using substances to escape them.
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