With the normalization of marijuana, there’s been increased discussion about whether or not marijuana is addictive. While most users won’t become addicted, it is still a mood-altering substance that can have psychological and physical effects. A 2015 study found that 30 percent of people who used marijuana met the criteria for cannabis use disorder.
Like any substance, there are still risks associated with marijuana usage. Even recreational usage can progress to addiction. Learn more about risk factors associated with addiction, as well as some of the diagnostic criteria for cannabis use disorder.
How People Can Become Addicted to Marijuana
One of the biggest determining factors that influences a person’s susceptibility is if they have a family history of addiction. Genetics can make a person predisposed to developing an addiction not just to marijuana, but any other substance or activity that can be addictive.
Lifestyle and social factors also play a part in the development of marijuana addiction. For instance, someone who has a satisfying career, a healthy romantic relationship, and a supportive group of friends may have a lower risk of developing an addiction. All of these factors can help an individual engage in healthy behaviors and avoid negative ones.
A person who has a mental health condition such as depression, anxiety, or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder may find that using marijuana helps them manage their symptoms and feelings. For this reason, it’s common for someone with a mental health disorder to develop an addiction.
Signs of Cannabis Use Disorder
Marijuana can have short- and long-term health consequences. Slow reaction time, impaired memory, anxiety and even short-term psychosis are all side effects of marijuana usage, and may be signs of abuse.
Related Post: Health Effects of Marijuana Use
It’s important to note that physical or psychological effects are not indicative of an addiction. An addiction often impacts a person’s ability to live their life. They use despite harmful consequences. Here are some of the more common signs of marijuana addiction, or cannabis use disorder.
One of the common indicators of addiction is the loss of control. A person may use marijuana than they intended to, or they may use it for longer periods of time than they intended.
Dependence is another important indicator. Someone who increases their marijuana usage to achieve the same psychological effects could be dependent on the substance. Dependence is not as common with marijuana compared to other substances; however, marijuana potency has increased over the last few decades. A lot is unknown about the effects of increased potency, but it could change how people react to marijuana.
Another sign of addiction is avoiding social obligations like work, friends, and hobbies in favor of using. Social withdrawal is a common sign when someone has a substance use disorder.
Those who are addicted to marijuana and dependent may not care about the negative impact on their lives. Rather than seeking help or treatment, usage can take control of their life. It can interfere with personal, financial, and career goals.
If you think you or a loved one has a cannabis use disorder, know that help is readily available. Reach out to Pyramid Healthcare to learn more about treatment options for substance use.
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