Although there has been increasing acceptance and legalization of marijuana use in some states, the drug still poses a risk for abuse and addiction. Millions of people in the United States meet the diagnostic criteria for a marijuana use disorder. Fortunately, you can avail of a marijuana addiction treatment program in New Jersey at BlueCrest Recovery. Contact our marijuana rehab center today at 888.292.9652 to learn more about our options for substance abuse treatment in New Jersey.
What is marijuana?
Marijuana comes from the plant Cannabis sativa. The primary psychoactive compound is delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which delivers the “high” that many users value. Marijuana is typically smoked, vaped, eaten, sprayed under the tongue, taken by tincture, absorbed through the skin, or taken by pill.
More than 10 U.S. states have legalized marijuana for both medical and recreational use. Medical, but not recreational, use of marijuana is legal in many additional states. Medical marijuana is prescribed by a doctor to treat health symptoms or conditions.
What are the Effects of Marijuana?
THC and other chemical compounds in marijuana interact with the body’s chemical messengers to signal and activate areas of the brain that control pleasure, movement, memory, sensory perception, and an altered sense of time. Users typically describe a deep understanding of relaxation and a heightened sense of fun. When marijuana is smoked, the effects are felt quickly as the chemicals rush through the lungs into the bloodstream. Consuming marijuana in edibles or drinks takes longer to feel the effects, as the chemicals must first move through the digestive system before reaching the bloodstream.
The effects of marijuana are not always pleasurable. This can especially be a problem when consuming edibles. Because it can take up to four hours to experience the full effects of an edible, users may become impatient and continue to ingest more, resulting in too great of a dose. This can cause an intense, possibly frightening high. Other symptoms that may result from using too much marijuana include:
- Extreme confusion
- Fast heart rate
- Increased blood pressure
- Severe nausea or vomiting
Any of these effects can contribute to unintentional injuries, including motor vehicle crashes, falls, or poisoning.
Can you Become Addicted to Marijuana?
Just because many states have legalized or are in the process of legalizing marijuana does not mean there is no risk of harm, abuse, or addiction resulting from its use. Although many patients and doctors strongly believe in its therapeutic effects, many adverse health effects are associated with marijuana use, including the risk of addiction. Problem use of marijuana is defined as a marijuana use disorder. Although it’s not labeled as “addiction,” those with marijuana use disorder exhibit addictive behaviors.
What is Marijuana Use Disorder?
Physicians use the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM-5) to diagnose substance use disorders (SUDs). The DSM-5 recognizes 10 categories of substance use disorder, one of which is marijuana use disorder. The criteria used by the DSM-5 to diagnose and rank the severity of a marijuana use disorder are the same criteria used for any SUD.
Frequent users of marijuana often experience withdrawal symptoms when they stop taking it, which may include mood changes, irritability, restlessness, sleeping disorders, cravings, and other forms of discomfort.
How Does a Marijuana Addiction Treatment Program Work?
Marijuana use disorder often co-occurs with other SUDs and behavioral and mental issues. People struggling with marijuana use disorder, particularly those with severe forms of the condition, experience considerable mental disability, and often these disabilities continue after treatment for marijuana use disorder.
Marijuana use disorder may be treated in an inpatient treatment setting or by attending an outpatient treatment program. The program usually includes individual, group, and family therapy sessions and education on addiction, recovery, and preventing relapse. Many treatment programs utilize a 12-step approach to recovery.