Marijuana Addiction….Marijuana is the commonly accepted name for the plant family Cannabis, which is comprised of the two species cannabis sativa and cannabis indica. Marijuana is also known as “bud”, “weed”, “chronic”, “pot”, and a variety of other slang terms. All forms of marijuana plants contain psychoactive compounds called cannabinoids, the most common being THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol), all of which are mildly psychedelic.
While all parts of the plant contain trace amounts of THC, the majority of the plant’s THC is contained in the flowering tops or “buds” of the plant. These “buds” are generally consumed by smoking or vaporizing them, but they may also be consumed orally in baked foods. Sometimes the THC resin is collected from marijuana plants and is processed into blocks of dense resinous plant matter called hashish.
It is a common misconception that marijuana is not a powerful or addictive drug. Modern marijuana is substantially more potent than that of 20 or 30 years ago having THC content 10 to 15 percent higher than the marijuana of the sixties and seventies.
The effects of smoking marijuana are equivalently more potent and include mild euphoria and physical pleasure, increased awareness of sensation, increased appetite, often referred to as “the munchies”, and increased enjoyment of music and humor. Side effects from long-term use often include drowsiness and laziness, poor short and long-term memory, absent-mindedness, paranoia, and anxiety.
Although marijuana has not been shown to lead to physical dependence, it can be extremely habit-forming and psychologically addictive. Formarijuana addiction & addicts, the cessation of use leads to a variety of withdrawal symptoms including craving, anxiety, sleeplessness, and irritability.
Scientific studies have shown that long-term marijuana use can significantly impair cognitive ability and there is an apparent correlation between heavy pot use and various social disorders. Some research shows that pot smoking appears to have measurable psychological effects even after long periods of abstinence from the drug.
Additionally, marijuana smoke has much higher levels of tar and other toxic chemicals, including carcinogens, than cigarette smoke. Pot smokers tend to inhale the smoke much deeper than tobacco smokers and do so without the benefit of a filter.