Marijuana Withdrawal Symptoms

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When you use a drug every day and you decide to stop, there are some important things you need to know. First, you need to know if there’s a withdrawal period associated with the drug. If there is, then you need to be aware of the withdrawal symptoms. While most people associate withdrawal with drugs like heroin, amphetamines, or alcohol, many people do not know there are withdrawal symptoms associated with marijuana. Marijuana withdrawal symptoms may not be as intense as those associated with other drugs, but they’re still very real.

Beacon House offers a marijuana addiction treatment center in California.

If you’re ready to take the first step on your recovery journey, we can answer your questions, discuss your issues, and look at the treatment options available to you.

Primary Marijuana Withdrawal Symptoms

Long-term marijuana use can alter your brain chemistry, resultingt in dependency on THC, the active ingredient in marijuana. This is why your body goes into withdrawal when you stop using. The chemical changes happen over a time and can cause, among other things, severe cravings for the drug.

Some of the most common marijuana withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Headaches
  • Irritability
  • Insomnia
  • Chills or shakes
  • Agitation
  • Depression or anxiety
  • Decreased appetite
  • Fatogue

Other symptoms may include stomach pain or nausea, extreme sweating, or restlessness. Keep in mind that most of these symptoms will go away after a day or two. Most symptoms are short-lived. This allows you to get through detox quickly and start your treatment plan.

What Affects the Severity of Marijuana Withdrawal?

Keep in mind that the main reason that you experience symptoms is that your brain and body is trying to adjust to the absence of the main chemical in marijuana, THC. Two factors affect the severity of marijuana withdrawal:

  1. Duration of daily use. If you use marijuana daily for an extended period of time – meaning weeks, months, or years, then your body adapts to its presence. The longer the use, the more severe the brain and body will respond to its absence.
  2. Amount of use. A person who uses a small amount of marijuana will likely experience less severe withdrawal symptoms than someone who uses a large amount. An all day every day user will likely experience more severe symptoms than someone who uses marijuana once a day, for instance.

If you have combined marijuana with heavy alcohol use or the use of other drugs, then you may experience additional withdrawal symptoms, that are not associated with marijuana, but associated with those other substances.

To learn more about withdrawal symptoms associated with other drugs, please read these articles:

Alcohol Use: Facts and Statistics

Opioid Addiction: Facts, Figures, and Treatment

Cocaine Addiction: Facts, Figures, and Treatment

Methamphetamine Addiction: Facts, Figures, and Treatment

Those four articles inlcude information that’s helpful to anyone concerned with their use – or a friend or loved one’s use – of alcohol, opioids, cocaine, or methamphetamine.

What Happens After Detox?

Once you complete your initial detox, there are several treatment programs available to help you overcome you substance use disorder. People that complete a treatment program have a far greater chance of sustained recovery than clients who go through detox and do not follow up with specialized treatment.

A therapist can meet with you after your detox to discuss your treatment options. These may include:

  • Residential, inpatient, or outpatient services
  • 12-step recovery program with group support
  • Dual diagnosis treatment
  • Holistic therapy programs
  • Cognitive behavioral therapy
  • Trauma therapy

Are Your Ready to Take the First Step to Recovery?

If you, a friend, or someone you love stops using marijuana and needs support maintaining abstinence, the best option is to contact a specialized substance use disorder treatment center to schedule a full biopsychosocial assessment. Clinicians trained in addiciton treatment help manage marijuana withdrawal symptoms and collaborate with you, your friend, or loved to lay a strong foundation for sustained recovery. Treatment works – and evidence shows that the sooner a person with a substance use disorder receives treatment, the greater their chance for long-term abstinence.