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The Truth About Marijuana Addiction

Simple Path Recovery on July 12, 2019

The Facts About Marijuana Addiction 

The debate over marijuana addiction is a complex one with people claiming that you cannot become addicted to marijuana, but according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) and the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), marijuana is certainly addictive.1


Who Can Become Addicted to Marijuana?

If you are wondering who can become addicted to marijuana, the answer is everyone. But people who have certain genes in their DNA may be more susceptible than others.

Those who are addicted to marijuana actually develop a significant physical dependence on the drug, which means the person’s body starts to rely on the presence of marijuana to function normally.1

Marijuana addiction functions the same way other addictive drugs do, by rewarding the brain with dopamine. When a person smokes or takes marijuana, the chemical THC releases the dopamine in the brain, causing a euphoric sensation, which the brain then associates with a positive experience, compelling a person to take the drug again.


Potency and Frequency of Marijuana

Over the years, marijuana potency has changed drastically. In the 1990s, the average THC content in confiscated marijuana samples was roughly 3.8 percent and in 2014 it was 12.2 percent. Today though, the average marijuana extract contains more than 50 percent THC, with some samples exceeding 80 percent.2

With stronger strains of marijuana out there, many people are quickly building up a tolerance to the drug faster. Over the years, especially after it’s been legalized in multiple states, the way people ingest marijuana has evolved dramatically to include a wide variety of edibles and highly concentrated oils called “dabs.” The potency of marijuana has rapidly become stronger, thus changing the way people use it as well as the frequency of use.


Signs and Symptoms of Marijuana Addiction

Over time, marijuana addiction can lead to a number of health problems, such as lung issues, decline in IQ, and issues with memory, both short-term and long-term.

Signs of Marijuana Addiction:

  • A craving for the drug
  • Inability to quit using marijuana
  • Neglect friends and family
  • Continue use despite the problems it has caused


Symptoms of Marijuana Addiction:

  • Sleep Issues
  • Agitation
  • Withdrawal
  • Decreased appetite


At Simple Path Recovery, we take the time to get you clean and help you with your marijuana addiction. Our drug detox center is available for you or a loved one, our phone lines are always open, and we have done the research about marijuana addiction. To learn more about our facility, contact us and speak to one of our addiction specialists who are more than willing to help you.



  1. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Service Administration
  2. National Institute on Drug Abuse – Is marijuana addictive?
  3. Drug Rehab – Is Marijuana Addictive?
  • Florida Department of Children and Families
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