Marijuana is one of the most popular illicit substances in the world and continues to become more prevalent in many societies as medical and recreational marijuana become more common. If you listen to some proponents for marijuana legalization, you’ll hear that pot cures cancer as well as a host of other benefits and is completely safe. However, when you listen to those on the other side, you’ll hear about the potential of weed being a gateway drug. This, of course, leads to a lot of misinformation and questions of legitimacy. What’s true? Is marijuana bad for you or not?
Is Marijuana Bad for You?
Consider that you inhale the smoke of the burning plant directly into your lungs. No credible evidence connects marijuana smoking to lung cancer. However, there is evidence that it contributes to unhealthy lung changes. Examples include tissue scarring, bronchitis, and ongoing coughs. The simple truth is when smoking the plant form of marijuana, known as cannabis, you are ingesting more than just the active ingredient, THC. Plant matter and potential chemicals are also being smoked which can lead to the negative health effects. Extracting THC into a more pure form can help remove some of these potential risks.
THC is the psychoactive component of marijuana or the part that causes you to get “high.” In addition to smoking it, you can find it in edibles, capsules, tinctures, oils and more. Though CBD and THC come from the same plant, they do very different things when consumed. THC is generally more desired for the high it produces while CBD is typically more used for its medicinal effects.
CBD vs THC
These compounds are slightly different in chemical structure, but that difference greatly affects the ways in which they interact with your brain chemicals. CBD doesn’t cause a high, while THC does. That’s the biggest and most important difference. For this reason, CBD is used for medical purposes as it avoids the high caused by THC but strill produces the desirable pain relieving, hunger increasing, and relaxing effects.
However, that said both CBD vs THC have medicinal uses, but because CBD doesn’t offer the high, it is sometimes preferred by those just interested in its health benefits. CBD is often used to address pain, inflammation, nausea, migraines, depression and anxiety treatment. THC is good for treating glaucoma, muscle spasticity, insomnia, poor appetite and various types of pain. Both are effective for multiple forms of treatments but the best option may depend on the patient and their conditions.
Can You Overdose on Marijuana?
The Center for Disease Control, which typically takes a conservative position on most medical issues, judges the odds of a fatal marijuana overdose as unlikely. There are some claims that marijuana isn’t actually that safe. These claims to the contrary, however, focus almost entirely on doses of pure THC.
That’s a bit like asking, “Can you overdose on weed?” Then, someone answers, “Yes, after you run it through an intense laboratory process to extract one component and take a massive dose.”
For all intents and purposes, the answer is that you can’t overdose on weed if you smoke it in anything resembling normal amounts. To this point in time, there have not been overdose deaths caused solely by smoking marijuana.
Risks to Using Marijuana
A more pressing question that can you overdose on marijuana is: “Are there other risks to using marijuana?” The answer to that question is a definitive yes.
Marijuana is widely considered a gateway drug. In essence, it normalizes drug use for a person. So, you’re more likely to say yes when someone offers a harder drug. Taking harder drugs runs the risk of serious, life-threatening addiction. This is largely considered one of the most dangerous aspects of marijuana abuse. While marijuana itself does not pose a serious threat, the other drugs it puts you near are far less safe.
Marijuana can also prove addictive in most meaningful ways. It can become the exclusive focus of your day-to-day life, impair work performance, and make you neglect social obligations. All of which are key indicators of addiction. In many ways, the psychological addiction that marijuana can lead to is the same as the psychological addiction to any other substance.
Is Marijuana Addictive?
One of the clearest signs of marijuana’s addictive nature is that of its users’ inability to stop using the drug. In fact, most people experience withdrawal after prolonged use of marijuana. These two signs make potential for addiction to marijuana obvious.
According to doctors, addiction does not require both physical and psychological dependence on a drug. Cocaine provides a good example of this. Specifically, cocaine usually causes a psychological dependence, but not physical addiction.
Marijuana causes some people to experience physical withdrawal when they stop using the drug, but most others notice few physical problems. This means some people show little sign of physical dependence on marijuana. Others, however, experience intense psychological dependence on the drug and cannot quit using. Therefore, marijuana addiction treatment center does exist but is somewhat unique from person to person.
Two clear signs of addiction are physical tolerance to the drug and withdrawal symptoms when you quit using. Moreover, if marijuana holds high priority in your life, despite knowing it causes problems, you likely suffer its addiction. Therefore, this helps you gauge your own answer to, “Is marijuana addictive?”
About one in ten users of marijuana develop addiction, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. While this ratio is not as extreme as other drugs, potential for addiction is clear. Furthermore, using the drug every day leads to a 25 to 50 percent chance of addiction. About 4.2 million Americans experience addiction to marijuana at any given time.
How CVRC Can Help
Marijuana addiction can be a real problem and cause a number of difficulties in your life. It’s physical symptoms may not be debilitating but it’s psychological ones can cause a good degree of stress and other issues. Here at Crest View, we offer addiction treatment that addresses the needs of each client. In addition, our staff has the expertise to help you overcome any issues due to a dependence on marijuana.
Our programs will meet all of your comprehensive, individual needs. In fact, we treat you as a person and offer reality therapy to help you throughout every aspect of your life. Call us today at 866-350-5645 to learn more about how we can help you to overcome marijuana abuse.