Cannabis has sparked many names for itself and just as many controversies. It seems as if everyone has an opinion of how, where, when, and if cannabis should be used. Within the debates about weed, misinformation can be thrown around, and separating fact from fiction is difficult. Has anyone ever told you that marijuana is not addictive? Truth is, about 30 percent of people who use cannabis become addicted, and the percentages rise for daily users. Often, when people detox from cannabis, they report side effects such as nightmares, headaches, insomnia, sweats, tremors, digestive problems, and more.
Cannabis addiction has become a significant enough issue that the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) now recognizes it as cannabis use disorder. Many people use weed legally and effectively, but some do not. Some people find themselves using it more often and in greater quantities than they ever intended. Some people have trouble quitting or curbing their use. Some people understandably need professional support as they quit using cannabis. The therapists at Thriveworks in Westminster, CO treat cannabis use disorder and have helped many people detox from and live without weed.
the official definition of cannabis use disorder (CUD) comes from the DSM-5: use of pot regularly for a minimum of one year while also experiencing a loss of functioning and an increase in life disruptions. The lack of functioning and increase in disruptions may show themselves through at least two of the following symptoms:
- Cravings for cannabis, including intense dreams, psychosomatic smells, vivid images, and/or obsessive thoughts about it.
- Ineffective attempts to curb or stop use.
- Dedicating substantial time to pot use—obtaining it, ingesting it, and recovering from it.
- Increased frequency of weed use.
- Experiencing personal, professional, or relational harm from weed use but continuing to partake.
- Ingesting more cannabis to feel similar psychoactive or hallucinogenic effects.
- Allowing one’s job, hygiene, school, family, or friends to suffer because of pot use.
- Mixing risky behavior and pot use such as driving a car while high.
- Experiencing withdrawal symptoms while attempting to quit marijuana.
There are varying degrees of addiction, and DSM-5 recognizes a scale for CUD that relies upon the number of displayed symptoms. One to three symptoms is mild CUD. Four to five symptoms is moderate CUD. Six or more symptoms equates to severe CUD.
Cannabis Use Disorder’s Risk Factors
The DSM-5 lists several factors that may increase a person’s risk for CUD. These include,
- Low socioeconomic status.
- A family history of chemical dependency.
- Background of abuse.
- A pre-existing Conduct Disorder or Antisocial Personality Disorder.
- History of tobacco use.
- Unstable family circumstances.
- Low school performance.
- Easy to access to weed.
- Family members who use pot.
- Living in a drug-tolerant culture.
Treatment for CUD
The body stores THC, the psychoactive compound in cannabis, in its fat cells. Cleaning the body of THC can take longer than if it were water-soluble. Detoxing can take a while. People often experience challenges when they curb or quit weed. Treatment for CUD has helped many people overcome those challenges.
Therapy can equip people with coping strategies for overcoming withdrawal symptoms and living without weed. Often, people are overwhelmed with vivid dreams and intense emotions after they quit cannabis, and a therapist can guide people on effective strategies for handling these. Therapy may also allow people to explore any negative experiences or emotions that led them to begin using cannabis. Through counseling, people may be able to resolve those experiences and emotions in a healthy way.
Treatment Sessions at Thriveworks Westminster, CO
If you feel like it’s time to quit or curb your cannabis use, know that Thriveworks Westminster has counselors who are experienced with treating CUD and are ready to help. We want to care for our clients, even from the first time they dial our office. Here are a few things we have done to make scheduling treatment as easy as possible. There are no waitlists. We make evening and weekend appointments available, and we work with many insurance plans. Are you ready to treat your CUD? Let’s get started. Call today.