Parent Testimonials Video

Marijuana Facts

Many people are under the impression that marijuana is a harmless drug, causing no ill or permanent side effects or health issues. Let's look at some marijuana facts. Studies show that marijuana, also known as pot, reefer, or Mary Jane, is the most widely used illegal drug in the United States .Marijuana is also many times referenced as being a "gateway" drug. This means that while most people who become drug abusers start out with marijuana, they many times will go on to explore other harder substances. In this way, marijuana is the stepping stool used to introduce future abusers into the world of illicit drugs.

Here are some more marijuana facts. The active chemical that produces the "high" associated with marijuana use is known as THC. This stands for delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol. The potency of the THC in the marijuana being abused accounts for the intensity or lack of intensity of the immediate effects. Many people experience almost immediate effects of feeling high or relaxed after smoking marijuana. Eating, another way to abuse marijuana, may take up to 30 minutes to one hour for effects to be apparent. After the initial high begins, it typically lasts from two to three hours.

Symptoms of marijuana use may include red, bloodshot appearance of the eyes. Eyes may also have a "glassy" appearance. Some people may experience dizziness after using marijuana, while others may react with giddiness. Others with less favorable reactions may experience paranoia or feelings of anxiousness. Typically after smoking marijuana, people will get cravings to eat, often referred to as getting the munchies.

Marijuana can cause harm in a variety of ways, and should never be considered a "safe" or harmless drug. Changes can occur both physically and psychologically. Some marijuana users may even symptoms similar to those suffering with Schizophrenia. Regular use of this drug can result in feelings of depression, anxiety disorders, mood swings, as well as causing cognitive impairment such as memory issues and problem solving impairment.

Much as with regular tobacco smoking, marijuana can also cause lung damage and breathing problems such as wheezing and upper respiratory conditions such as bronchitis. Marijuana also contains cancer causing chemicals. All in all, smoking marijuana over regular cigarettes is not any safer. Similar to alcohol, as person under the influence of marijuana may have impaired judgment and loss if inhibitions, which can lead to risky and reckless behaviors. Driving under the influence of marijuana is much like driving while being intoxicated from alcohol.

Some marijuana facts you may not be aware of are that using marijuana can result in abnormal menstrual changes in women, and decreased sperm production in men. In men, regular use can also lead to an increase in the breast tissue, resulting in what is known as gynecomastia. These facts alone would be reason enough to stop marijuana use, or never begin in the first place.

Marijuana dependency, or addiction, begins when the user has to keep increasing their intake of the drug in order to achieve the same kind of high previously attainable with lesser amounts. This begins the vicious cycle of abuse. The user may experience flu-like symptoms if they are forced to stop their daily use of the drug. Cravings and withdrawal symptoms may last up to two weeks for heavy users. THC also remains in the system for a long period of time after the last use. Traces of THC may even be evident in the urine of the user for up to two weeks after being free of marijuana. THC can be an easy drug to trace through home test kits or mandatory employer or medical testing for drugs.

Signs of marijuana use are similar to signs of other types of drug use. Disinterest in once loved sports or hobbies, truancy issues with school, slacking off with grades, mood changes, and an unkempt appearance are all symptoms of marijuana abuse. Some users may try to mask the smell of the marijuana by burning heavily scented candles or incense in an attempt to cover up the smell.

The education used in the rehabilitation programs for marijuana abuse will focus on such factors as patterns in behavior and situations that may trigger use of the drug. As in treating any addiction situation, it is important to get to the root of what is causing the addictive behavior in the first place.

Marijuana interventions have been proven successful in cases of people who are 100% on board with the idea of recovering at first. Sometimes, after the abuser has been through detox and has had a few days of drug free living, this can be a huge wakeup call and really prompt them to continue on with the recovery program.

Marijuana addiction can affect both genders, any age range, any race, or any social class. Never think of marijuana use as being harmless or less harmful than other drugs or alcohol. It can not only impact your health in many negative ways, but also impair you psychologically as well. It can cause people to throw away their potential in school, hobbies, or work. It can also lead to withdrawal from social contacts and relationships as the person slips further into the grasp of the addiction.

Addiction is a vicious cycle that must be stopped. In order to recognize the importance of seeking help for marijuana addition, this drug needs to stopped being viewed as "only marijuana" and be seen for the harmful effects it causes and for having the potential to lead into heavier drug use that it represents.