10 Facts About Marijuana Addiction and How to Stop It
The Narconon drug education booklet, Ten Things Parents May Not Know About Marijuana, offers parents valuable insight into the subject of the most popular street drug in America. If you have kids, you need this information. According to government studies, around half of all high school students will use marijuana at least once by the time they graduate, and about 1 in 15 use the drug every day or nearly that often. Take a moment now to learn 10 of the most important facts about marijuana:
- Marijuana Is a Gateway Drug – Young people who start smoking pot are statistically far more likely to transition into using other drugs; for some because they no longer get as high on marijuana as they once did, and for others because once they have crossed the line into the world of drug use, they feel less inhibition about trying cocaine, heroin or other drugs.
- Marijuana Is Stronger Than Before – Maybe you smoked pot when you were in your teens and think based on your own experiences that it’s not really a big deal if your kids do the same; what you may not know is that your kids wouldn’t be smoking the same pot as you did; most marijuana has been cultivated for higher concentrations of THC, the active chemical in the drug, to the point where pot is anywhere from 3 to 10 times stronger than it was only a short while ago.
- Marijuana Lowers Ability to Learn and Succeed – National surveys have demonstrated that students who are struggling in school are far more likely to be pot smokers, and research has also found that heavy marijuana consumption at an early age has the potential to permanently reduce IQ.
- THC Stays in the Body – THC is a fat-soluble substance, which means that when a person smokes pot, some of the drug gets lodged in the fatty tissues of the body; with ongoing use, one is liable to accumulate a considerable buildup of the drug, which can have an impairing effect on physical and mental health.
- Marijuana Is Addictive – One of the most common misconceptions about smoking pot is that you can’t get hooked. Certainly, THC isn’t as addictive as heroin or cocaine, but around 1 in 10 marijuana users get addicted.
- Marijuana Does Not Cure Anything – Marijuana has gotten a lot of buzz in recent years for its medicinal uses. Putting aside any controversy over whether or not cannabis could have any role to play in treatment, it is certainly not a cure. At best, THC can be used to ease pain and stimulate appetite for cancer patients suffering from nausea during chemotherapy. It does not, however, cure any condition.
- Marijuana Can Cause Destructive Emotional Changes – The loss of motivation and ambition displayed by a marijuana user is so common as to be a stereotype. People who smoke pot tend to do less, to strive less and to achieve less. As a result, their self-confidence suffers, which keeps them from doing even more, and so the vicious cycle continues. This is one of the ways that marijuana can ruin a person’s life.
- Marijuana Can Create Severe Mental & Physical Effects – When someone smokes pot on an ongoing basis, he or she will often undergo a major deterioration of mental and physical health. Sometimes this is something like respiratory complications, while in other cases it is manifested as a statistical increase in the likelihood of a psychotic break, of suicidal thoughts or depression or paranoia.
- Marijuana Abuse Creates Serious Risks – People use marijuana to get high, and in most cases this means that they want to cut loose, forget about their problems, relax and have fun. This lowered inhibition may feel good, but it also makes the person more likely to take dangerous risks and to do things that could cause injury or death. Whether it’s drugged driving, having unprotected sex or something else, a person who is high is less likely to play it safe.
- What Your Kids Are Being Told About Marijuana – Perhaps the most important thing that you can know on this subject is what it is that your children are hearing, so that you can more effectively address the issue. In addition to some of the common misconceptions covered above, others include that pot “isn’t as dangerous as alcohol,” that it “makes you more creative,” or that “everyone is doing it.” You need to be prepared to respond to these misconceptions. Keep in mind that you should also ask your kids what they’ve been told. Give them room to talk about the subject and to open up with you so that you can have a more effective conversation
How to Stop Addiction to Marijuana
The most effective thing you can do to stop marijuana addiction is to keep it from happening in the first place. If your child has already started smoking pot, however, you can find help with Narconon. Start with their online resource, “How to Help Someone Stop Smoking Weed,” which features information about how you can spot signs of marijuana abuse, and what you can do to help your child quit. If it’s not possible to quit without outside help, there are Narconon drug rehab centers in locations around the nation.