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Although there is a tendency to treat marijuana use as recreational only and not serious or harmful, marijuana addiction is real and can require help from a rehab center to break the habit of using– just like other substances. Of all the drugs that are used, marijuana is one of the most misunderstood. Archstone Behavioral Health is dedicated to helping individuals receive treatment and learn the truth about their addiction, no matter what drug they are using. In our treatment centers, we are equipped with the proper tools to help anyone overcome their addiction.

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What is Marijuana Exactly?

Marijuana Support Group in Lantana

Sometimes the words cannabis, marijuana, or THC are used interchangeably, however, they all refer to different items. Cannabis refers to the entire plant, while marijuana refers to the dried leaves, stems, flowers, and seeds from the plant. The chemical within the plant which has the ability to create mind-altering states is called THC. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, after alcohol and tobacco, marijuana is the most commonly used addictive drug– specifically most often used by youth and young adults. People either smoke marijuana through joints or in pipes (bongs). Some use blunts, which are partially or fully emptied cigars replaced with marijuana. Additionally, in recent years have started using vaporizers to avoid smoke while getting the effect of the THC, however, using THC is still harmful and includes consequences in itself. Depending on the user’s intended effects and preferences, they may use an edible, which is a cannabis-infused food.

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Is Marijuana a Gateway Drug?

Whether marijuana is a gateway drug or not has become a controversial topic in recent years. Although the future can never be predicted fully, because it depends on the individual, research has been done which has revealed correlations between marijuana use and the use of other drugs. The National Epidemiological Study of Alcohol Use and Related Disorders showed that those who use marijuana were more likely to develop an Alcohol Use Disorder and that they were also more likely to use nicotine regularly.

The brain is extremely moldable during the teenage years, and due to the popularity of this drug in the youth population, youth who use marijuana regularly or find themselves with marijuana addiction are more susceptible to further substance abuse later in life. Under the guise of treating their mental health through marijuana or even simply as using the drug recreationally, an individual could end up addicted and in need of treatment.

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Context is Important

It must also be noted that whether marijuana leads to the use of other substance abuse issues is not solely dependent on the drug itself. Becoming addicted to marijuana or other substances is a process and does not happen without a surrounding environment. Further, certain risk factors or protective factors make it more or less likely that someone will develop an addiction. Risk factors correlated to an increased likelihood of substance abuse include being surrounded by those who use substances or have mental health issues, living in a neighborhood with poverty and violence, and having laws that increase accessibility to substances. On the other hand, living in a stable household, being involved in positive community activities such as sports, and laws limiting the availability of a drug would be examples of protective factors.

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Effects of Having a Marijuana Habit

Although those who have an addiction often only think about the positive feelings using the drug will provide for them in the short term, long-term use can lead to individuals being negatively affected by side effects of use that they never knew existed. Short-term symptoms include loss of coordination and memory, altered perception of time, difficulties with thinking or processing, and changes in mood. Using marijuana long-term can lead to several unwanted symptoms including cognitive impairment and respiratory issues. Although many individuals use marijuana to help them cope with their anxiety or depression, smoking marijuana has been linked to worsening symptoms of anxiety, depression, and schizophrenia. To cope without marijuana after developing physical dependency and psychological addiction can seem harmful to mental health in the short term, but recovery from marijuana addiction is worth it in the long term. Many individuals say that once they experience detox from marijuana and are finally sober, they have a new outlook on life and finally feel free.

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Marijuana Addiction Treatment

Marijuana rehab is a treatment to be taken seriously. No matter the drug, addiction plays a major role in someone’s life, and treatment at a rehab center could make all the difference. Seeking out an addiction program to support recovery can be difficult, especially with a drug whose effects are frequently underestimated. However, our recovery program at Archstone Behavioral Health is there for you or your loved one. We take pride in treating patients with the caring support they need to get sober and live a healthy life again. Our treatment centers offer inpatient treatment, or a residential treatment program, for those who feel they would experience more growth living at the treatment center.

However, the choice is up to you. Our treatment programs are all personalized to meet your needs and provide support for your addictions in whatever way you may need, whether that is assistance managing withdrawal symptoms from marijuana use via an outpatient program, becoming part of a support group, or attending regular therapy with one of our trained addiction professionals. Overcoming addictive behaviors can be stressful and difficult, but you can trust that with us, you or your loved one will receive the quality treatment needed to overcome their addiction and regain focus in their life once again.

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Finding Help Begins at Archstone Behavioral Health

Reaching out for help is your first step in recovering from addiction. Substance use disorder doesn’t happen overnight; recovery also takes time. Give your brain and body time to heal. Reaching out for help is the only way for many people to regain control of their lives. Contact Archstone Behavioral Health in Lantana, FL, today at 561.631.9478 to find out more about whether our addiction treatment programs are right for you or your loved one.