Addiction is a terrifying word. When discussing the negative effects of weed, a highly cited outcome is that of addiction. Understanding the definition of addiction is just as important as understanding one’s self in deciding if addiction may be an issue.
The Basics of Addiction
Addiction can be broken into two groups: physical and psychological. Physical addiction means that a particular substance must be used for a person to function normally, and in absence of that substance, the person will exhibit withdrawal symptoms.
On the other hand, psychological addiction has more to do with dependence on a process or behavior. Not carrying out this behavior won’t produce physical withdrawals, but it will certainly make the person feel like they aren’t right or can’t function properly. Also keep in mind, psychological addiction can be tied to any activity, even those outside drug abuse, such as with sex addiction.
Addiction as a Result of Marijuana Use
Marijuana has not established itself as a substance that causes physical addiction such as alcohol or heroin, but it displays evidence that it can be the source of psychological dependencies. Users who state they don’t feel normal or happy unless they are high is one strong sign of this sort of dependence. Another would be an individual who wants to use marijuana at all costs while pushing their goals, friends, or family to the side.
I mentioned sex as a source of potential addiction, but it is clear that not everyone who has sex becomes addicted even if they love it and engage in it daily. It has much more to do with the degree that activity occupies in someone’s life and the choices they make surrounding it.
Addiction to marijuana, like sex, can have regular users who have no discernible dependence to it and no trouble functioning normally in its absence. Then, obviously, there are people who may be completely consumed by their dependence, and their only focus is finding that next hit.
No clear formula indicates that someone is addicted to marijuana, but, as stated, it seems to have much more to do with what sort of priority marijuana plays in the user’s life and whether that is an acceptable level. Because it has more to do with behavior and less on physiological reactions, psychological dependence becomes much more subjective and particular to each user.
Responsibility and Education Helps Prevent Marijuana Addiction
I personally use marijuana on a daily basis, and I am always keeping a watchful eye on the effects of weed on my behavior as a result. Am I losing sight of my goals? Am I pushing away family and friends? Am I losing sight of what provides me with true happiness? These are all questions I ask myself relentlessly because it is my duty as a responsible user, no one else’s.
Everyone should be mindful of their usage and decide if marijuana is revealing itself as an enhancement or detriment in their own lives. Ultimately it is the responsibility of the individual user to achieve balance in their life through the course of their own decisions, and the most powerful choices have critical thinking and useful knowledge behind them.