Marijuana has been used in medicinal, spiritual and recreational practices for a historical periods on end. Statistically, marijuana is the most used illegal drug. The NIDA reports that in 2014, 22 million people in the United States had used marijuana within the last month’s period.
Cannabis works in the brain when THC attaches to cannabinoid receptors, activating them to produce a wealth of pleasant effects; THC, as well as other chemicals in marijuana, closely mirror naturally produced chemicals in the brain.
Long term, marijuana can adversely affect development, cognitive function, general memory, and brain function. Studies show that marijuana is primarily experimented with in the eighth, ninth, and tenth grades. These adolescent school years are full of critical growth and development. THC and other chemicals in marijuana impact key areas in the brain that deal with primary functioning and memory. People who start habitually using marijuana at a young age are proven to be at risk for slower development and long-lasting effect.
Like any substance, marijuana alters the mind in positive ways and negative ways. At once, marijuana can create a transcendental spiritual experience, as well as severe paranoia and anxiety. While marijuana may feel like it lifts you up, it truly shifts your brain cells and state of being. In recovery, the term ‘marijuana maintenance’ is used to describe the ‘program’ people work when they give up abusing all substances, but continue getting high on marijuana. Debate is wide as to whether this constitutes true ‘sobriety’. If one is wishing to abstain from mind altering substances and states, marijuana will have to be left behind.
Is marijuana addictive?
It is dependency forming in some people. Many argue that marijuana doesn’t chemically create symptoms of withdrawal the way other drugs do. However, people’s eating and sleeping routines become dependent upon smoking marijuana. Take them off the drug and see an immense amount of discomfort, anxiety, and irregular patterns emerge very quickly. “Marijuana use disorder” is the new term used for severe cases of marijuana dependency that begins to look and act like addiction. When someone’s marijuana use negatively influences their life, but they can’t seem to stop using it, they have developed a disordered addiction.
Refuge Recovery opens its doors to a variety of addictions including marijuana. Our mindfulness based program incorporates evidence based treatment methods to provide a comprehensive approach to addiction treatment. Call us today for more information on our detox, outpatient, inpatient, and sober living programs. (323) 207-0276