Is Weed Addictive? Your Questions Answered

A person smoking cannabis

Is Cannabis Addictive?

As cannabis has entered the mainstream, with many states legalizing its use, people around the nation are becoming concerned about potential side effects and addiction. Is weed addictive? Can it cause physical or psychological problems in the long term?

While there is ongoing research looking for answers to these questions, the team at Green Gone Detox will do our best to answer your most pressing questions. Explore this blog today to learn more about marijuana addiction and whether or not you may be at risk.

Clinical Addiction

Addiction is a clinical term that’s used to diagnose severe cases of dependence on a specific substance. It is only a possible diagnosis when a person can’t stop using the substance, even when it starts to interfere and negatively affect their life.

Since there isn’t enough evidence to support such dependence in the case of marijuana, the closest most people get to addiction is marijuana use disorder. This term simply means that the brain has adapted to the use of marijuana and has reduced the production of its own endocannabinoid neurotransmitters. As a result, when people stop consuming THC products, their brain experiences a version of withdrawal until endocannabinoid neurotransmitter production reaches previous levels.

So, is weed addictive? Although some people may experience mild withdrawal symptoms after long-term, heavy use, the technical answer is still no.

What Are Some Common Cannabis Withdrawal Symptoms?

A man with cannabis withdrawal symptoms

While weed is not addictive in most cases, some users still experience withdrawal when they stop consuming it. Much of the evidence of withdrawal is currently anecdotal, but many people report that they experience irritability, mood swings, and difficulty sleeping once they stop using marijuana. Some people also experience a decrease in appetite, restlessness, cravings, or other forms of physical discomfort. Most symptoms peak within the first week after quitting but may last up to two weeks.

Why is Weed Addictive?

Research shows that only about 9% of people become dependent on marijuana after consistent, heavy usage. In addition to changes in brain chemistry, some scientists believe that the rising potency of cannabis products is the cause behind marijuana use disorder. Since the 1990s, the average THC content in cannabis products has risen from 4% to about 15%. This increase in the potency of the products could change how our bodies interact with THC metabolites and result in more dependency issues.

What Can You Do?

If you’re interested in minimizing the chances of dependence or addiction, periodic tolerance breaks and cleanses could be the key along with a healthier lifestyle. Consider exploring detox options that eliminate THC metabolites for your system to get a fresh start.

Still, concerned that cannabis is addictive? Change your daily habits to ensure better health!

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