Whenever we have to think about a controversial drug, we are immediately reminded of marijuana. Although many studies have highlighted the potential benefits of this herb, several countries have banned its use because of its high potential for abuse and addiction. Even so, there are several countries where marijuana has been legalized for recreational and medicinal purposes.
Marijuana – what is it?
If we were to talk about marijuana, it would be the leaves, flowers, stems, and dried seeds of the Cannabis Sativa or Cannabis Indica plants. What makes this herb so special is its chemical compound – THC, which is known to have mind-altering effects when consumed. Another term used for marijuana is weed, an extremely common illegal drug that is popular with young people.
Since the THC levels in marijuana are steadily increasing, regular exposure can lead to harmful reactions. One of the reasons for the surge in abuse and addiction cases is the high THC levels in marijuana.
How is marijuana consumed?
Most marijuana users tend to consume it in the form of hand-rolled cigarettes or joints. Some people also like it in water pipes, also called bongs. People who are reluctant to inhale smoke often use vaporizers to deliver marijuana.
Another popular way of administering marijuana would be to smoke or consume various forms of resins that are high in THC. a method called dabbing. There are several extracts on the market such as: B. splinters, wax, hash oil, etc. Although dabbing is very popular, it delivers the active ingredients in large quantities to the body. Because of this, many users show up in the emergency room.
Aside from these options, foods have also become very popular with users. However, it usually takes much longer to digest, so it will take some time for the effects to show. As a result, many users tend to consume more in order to experience the results sooner, which leads to harmful consequences.
What are the harmful effects?
People who are prone to marijuana abuse want to keep the high for a maximum amount of time. Because of this, they took deep breaths and sometimes held it in their lungs. It irritates the lungs, leading to bronchitis, chronic cough, and asthma attacks. Smoking weed during pregnancy can affect the unborn baby, leading to abnormal size and premature birth.
In certain scenarios, marijuana, when consumed in larger doses, can cause toxic psychosis with hallucinations, making the individual paranoid. It is also known to affect concentration, coordination, and response to stimuli, which is why people should not drive a vehicle under its influence.
Marijuana Use and Addiction
If marijuana is used frequently, it can lead to a substance use disorder. It is a specific disease in which the user develops an addiction and cannot break it off, even if it causes social and health problems.
People who try to quit marijuana after years of heavy use tend to develop withdrawal symptoms, making it difficult for them to quit successfully. Some of the withdrawal symptoms associated with repeated marijuana use include –
- Mood swings
- Decreased appetite
- Problems with sleep
These symptoms are observed because the cannabinoids found in marijuana tend to affect our bodies in a similar way to endocannabinoids that the body naturally produces. When cannabis is consumed frequently, it decreases the sensitivity and production of endocannabinoids.
If consumption is stopped suddenly, it takes the body some time to restore the imbalance, which often lasts around three weeks.
Studies have shown that around 30% of cannabis users suffer from a “cannabis use disorder”, especially if they pick up the habit at a very young age. For cannabis use disorders, smoking cannabis takes precedence over other regular activities that ultimately interfere with relationships and work.
Can hemp flower help?
When it comes to marijuana addiction, the risk of relapse is quite high, especially because users are prone to anxiety, stress, and impaired impulse control. It is for this reason that the medical community is always looking for new and effective treatments and therapeutic protocols to help users overcome addiction.
Surprisingly, hemp can get into the spotlight because of its many incredible therapeutic effects. Although hemp is another type of cannabis sativa, it has been known to produce more CBD instead of THC.
Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of the many cannabinoids found in cannabis sativa plants. In its purest form, CBD is known to be non-addictive and non-psychoactive, which is why it has gained a huge following.
Previous research has shown that CBD is effective at reducing seizures in people with epilepsy and has analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects. Researchers are currently investigating the potential for controlling food cravings and withdrawal symptoms associated with marijuana addiction.
Although the primary compound responsible for marijuana addiction is THC, CBD could be used to reduce addiction by binding to the CB1 receptors present in the body. It will therefore decrease THC’s ability to interact with the receptors, which will ultimately reduce some of its activity.
Additionally, some people might consider smoking hemp flower to reduce the withdrawal symptoms, such as insomnia and anxiety, that are commonly associated with marijuana use.
If you are thinking of using CBD to overcome your marijuana addiction, there are several options on the market. However, it is always best to seek the opinion of a doctor to ensure you are making an informed decision.