Marijuana, also known as weed, pot, herb, or cannabis, is one of the most widely used psychoactive drugs in the world. While often viewed as a harmless, non-addictive substance, the reality is that long-term, heavy marijuana use can lead to physical dependence and a host of withdrawal symptoms when trying to quit.

If you’ve found yourself unable to stop using weed despite negative consequences to your health, relationships, and daily functioning, it may be time to consider professional help. At JourneyPure, we understand the challenges of marijuana addiction and offer evidence-based treatment programs to help you detox safely and build a strong foundation for lasting recovery. Call us at 888-985-2207 to learn more about our drug and alcohol rehab centers in Kentucky, Tennessee, and Florida.

JourneyPure is dedicated to helping those dealing with a dependency on weed

JourneyPure is dedicated to helping those dealing with a dependency on weed

Is Weed Physically Addictive?

Yes, contrary to popular belief, marijuana can be physically addictive. The main psychoactive compound in marijuana, THC, stimulates the brain’s reward system in a way similar to other drugs, prompting a flood of feel-good chemicals like dopamine. Over time and repeated use, the brain adapts to this extra dopamine by making less of its own and becoming less sensitive to its effects. This leads to tolerance, where higher and more frequent doses of marijuana are needed to feel the same high.

When a chronic marijuana user suddenly stops or significantly reduces their intake, the brain is left with a dopamine deficit, leading to physical and psychological withdrawal symptoms. While marijuana withdrawal is not typically life-threatening, it can be very uncomfortable and is a major reason why many heavy users struggle to quit on their own.

What to Expect During Marijuana Detox

If you’re detoxing from weed after long-term, heavy use, withdrawal symptoms usually start within 24-72 hours of the last dose, peak within the first week, and can linger for up to 2 weeks. However, some psychological symptoms like depression, anxiety and insomnia have been known to persist for several months, a phenomenon known as post-acute withdrawal syndrome (PAWS).

Common marijuana withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Irritability, anger, mood swings
  • Anxiety, restlessness, difficulty concentrating
  • Depressed mood, loss of interest in activities
  • Insomnia, vivid dreams, nightmares
  • Headaches, shakiness, sweating
  • Decreased appetite, weight loss
  • Stomach pain, nausea, diarrhea
  • Intense cravings for marijuana

The severity of withdrawal generally depends on factors like the frequency, amount and potency of marijuana used, as well as the individual’s overall health and metabolism. Those who use high-THC marijuana concentrates like wax, shatter and dabs tend to have more intense withdrawal symptoms. Using other drugs like alcohol or painkillers in conjunction with weed can also make detox more difficult.

Contrary to popular belief, it is possible to suffer from a marijuana addiction

Contrary to popular belief, it is possible to suffer from a marijuana addiction

Tips for Coping with Marijuana Withdrawal

Detoxing from weed is rarely dangerous, but it can be very challenging both physically and mentally. Here are some tips for easing symptoms and resisting relapse during the withdrawal period:

  • Surround yourself with supportive, sober people who want to see you succeed
  • Identify your top triggers to use marijuana and make a plan to avoid or manage them
  • Stay busy with healthy activities like exercise, hobbies and social engagements
  • Prioritize quality sleep and eat nutritious, regular meals to nourish your recovering body and brain
  • Practice relaxation techniques like deep breathing, meditation and progressive muscle relaxation
  • Use over-the-counter meds like ibuprofen, Pepto-Bismol and melatonin to relieve physical symptoms
  • Consider talk therapy or support groups like Marijuana Anonymous to work through underlying issues

While it’s possible to detox from weed at home, seeking professional help can make the process much more comfortable and reduce the likelihood of relapse. Medically-supervised detox provides a safe, controlled environment to withdraw and includes 24/7 monitoring and support to manage symptoms. It also offers a solid transition into further treatment to address the root causes of the addiction.

Find Freedom from Weed Addiction at JourneyPure

If you’re ready to quit marijuana but don’t know where to start, JourneyPure is here for you. Our comprehensive addiction treatment programs are designed to meet you where you are and help you build the skills for lifelong recovery. We offer:

  • Medically-supervised detox for a safe, complete marijuana withdrawal
  • Behavioral therapies to help you understand your addiction and learn healthy coping skills
  • Dual diagnosis treatment for common co-occurring conditions like depression, anxiety and ADHD
  • Family counseling to repair relationships and rebuild trust
  • Detailed aftercare planning and relapse prevention to help you stay on track

You don’t have to let marijuana control your life any longer. Contact JourneyPure today at 888-985-2207 or reach out online to start your journey to a happier, healthier, cannabis-free future. Our knowledgeable admissions navigators are available 24/7 to answer your questions, verify your insurance coverage, and help you take the first crucial steps toward recovery.

Staff Spotlight

Will Long

  • Middle Tennessee State University
  • years in the field

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