Many of us may have wondered if Medical Marijuana is Addictive. Most of us probably haven’t taken the time and effort to find out an authoritative answer to that question.
What is Addiction?
It may help to first define what addiction actually is. According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, “Addiction” is a compulsive physiological need for and use of a habit-forming substance, characterized by tolerance and by well-defined physiological symptoms upon withdrawal. (Even a coffee-drinker will experience head-aches when they try to quit.)
Does Medical Marijuana Fit That Description?
Do users who try to quit experience physiological symptoms upon withdrawal?
In an article in the magazine Psychology Today from 2013, Dr. Wesley Boyd M.D., Ph.D., states: “Obviously, the vast majority of marijuana users are neither addicted nor almost addicted to cannabis. Their use doesn’t escalate over time, they can enjoy its effects without endangering some major element of their lives.”
Marijuana doesn’t cause users to escalate their dosage over time or become physically addicted and dependent on it so that they do anything to get their hands on it, as is the case with those who are addicted to drugs or even certain pharmaceutical medications.
Dr. Boyd goes on to say that cannabis is not like other drugs regarding compulsive use and staggeringly awful withdrawal symptoms that other drugs leave you with if you abruptly stop using it.
Mild Withdrawal Symptoms of Medical Marijuana
There may be a few subtle physiological withdrawal signs when habitual use of marijuana is suddenly ceased. However, generally, symptoms are so mild that they may go unnoticed. Like kicking any habit, it may cause a little irritability or grouchiness, which is understandable.
The pulse may even speed up slightly but, nothing compared to an addiction like what people experience who withdraw from tobacco, alcohol, heroin, meth, Xanax, opioids, or even caffeine. Withdrawal from those substances can bring on nightmarish trauma and discomfort.
One in Twelve Adults are Alcohol Dependent
The National Institute on Drug Abuse, which is a department of the NIH, National Institute of Health, an official U.S. government agency, says that Marijuana is safer than alcohol, heroin and other drugs and it is not lethal as the afore-mentioned substances, among others have been shown to be.
Studies have demonstrated that one in 12 adults are dependent on alcohol, and a much smaller percentage of marijuana users become dependent on weed. Most cannabis users under the age of thirty generally stop using pot when they take on adult responsibilities such as marriage, home ownership and jobs.
Although alcohol is a more socially acceptable form of entertainment and relaxation, it is highly addictive and more harmful to the consumer than marijuana.
Based on what we have discussed above, we can safely come to the conclusion that medical marijuana is not addictive. Instead it has many health benefits for your body and mind.
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