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Thursday, December 13, 2018

Cannabis Use Carries Significant Risk

cannabis use disorder
Many individuals perceive marijuana or cannabis as benign. Most people have never heard of a person overdosing or dying from smoking "weed." Unlike alcohol, nobody associates cannabis with life-threatening health conditions like liver disease. The fact that medical marijuana and recreational use laws are in place in many states helps a significant number of people justify their "pot" use.

A nationwide survey shows that 22.2 million people aged 12 and older said that they had used cannabis in the past month, according to Medical News Today. While many who partake in marijuana use, do so intermittently, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) reports that as many as 30% of marijuana users may have some degree of cannabis use disorder.

It is fair to say that society does not deem chronic marijuana use as particularly harmful. While hearing of a friend seeking addiction treatment for cannabis is rare, it happens all the time. Marijuana use disorder is a real mental health condition that often demands outside help to overcome. Like the heavy use of any mind-altering substance, cannabis users build up tolerance and encounter problems when trying to quit. Hardly the markers of a healthy pastime.

The Risks of Cannabis Use

Experts believe that adolescents are highly susceptible to experiencing negative consequences from use and they are at a heightened risk of developing a use disorder down the road. New studies presented at the annual Society for Neuroscience meeting, sheds some more light on marijuana's effect on developing brains. While the findings presented last month involved animal models, the results are important nonetheless. At the meeting in San Diego, researchers showed:
  • Exposure to cannabis at a young age led to faulty development of brain circuits for memory and learning;
  • enhanced activity in brain circuits that regulate the formation of habits; and,
  • physical alterations in the development of brain regions involved in self-control, making decisions, and planning.
Parents living in states like California should be wary of co-signing their teenager's cannabis use. The evidence is clear, marijuana disrupts and alters cognitive functions; those who start using early in life are at high risk of developing a use disorder.

Marijuana use can cause health and social problems. Those who are addicted to marijuana find that stopping is an impossible task without assistance. Withdrawal symptoms are also common for such people when they attempt to quit, including:
  • Anxiety
  • Decreased Appetite
  • Cravings
  • Insomnia
  • Restlessness


Cannabis Use Disorder Treatment

If you or a loved one is unable to stop using marijuana on their own, it is possible that cannabis use disorder is presenting. The Haven at Pismo can help you break the cycle of addiction and develop a plan for achieving long-term recovery. Please contact us today to learn more about our services. The Haven is the perfect place to renew to your best today.