Your constant denial of smoking is one major sign that you’re smoking too much weed smoking too much weed and likely on a regular basis. An overdose of any drug isn’t good for our health. Sometimes we need to recognize the problem and draw the line by saying no to excessive smoking.
Marijuana is supposed to be a recreational drug, used by us for mere entertainment. However, if the drug is turned into a regular habit, the problem needs to be addressed.
In England, about 13.5% of 16- to 24-year-olds have used cannabis on a regular basis in the past few years, and almost one in three people will try it at least once during their lifetime. Of the 6.4% of adults aged 16-59 who reported using cannabis in the past few years, over 40% said they used it at least once a month.
Look Out for These Key Indicators for Marijuana Abuse
Weed, a dried and shredded mix of flowers, stems, and leaves of Cannabis sativa, has a pungent and distinct odour. An overuse of marijuana can prove to be very injurious to our health.
● Reduced intelligence quotient: If you are a long-term smoker, you may face difficulties in learning and memorizing things, thinking, and solving problems. THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), the main psychoactive chemical in cannabis, affects the memory by attaching to the receptors in the brain that are vital for memory formation.
● Exhibiting compulsive drug seeking: Marijuana is also known as the “gateway drug” that normalizes the idea of drug use. If you are addicted to weed, you are more susceptible to craving and abusing other drugs like cocaine, heroin, etc.
●Nervous breakdowns: Marijuana abuse may lead to nervous breakdowns, anxiety, trembling of hands and legs, depression, and other issues affecting the entire nervous system, which in turn hinders the thinking and working process.
● Other difficulties: Impaired coordination, distorted perceptions, loss of control, anxiety, constant mucus-filled cough, addiction, etc. are other effects and indications that you should try and stop abusing weed at that point.
● Social and personal problems: It can cause changes and fluctuations in your mood and social behaviour, also affecting your personal relations, because weed changes and affects a person’s temperament drastically.
Things to Do When Stoned
One feeling that we all dread is the extreme high and the unpleasantness that smoking too much weed can cause sometimes. Different consumers have different tolerance limits. We have to keep in mind our own lines and smoke accordingly. However, here are a few things to do when you feel totally stoned:
● Stop panicking. Although there are zero reported deaths after an overdose of marijuana, you may feel extremely nervous and start panicking after smoking weed. Sometimes, after getting high, so many things can rush into your mind all at once, making you feel uncomfortable.
● Hydrate yourself. If you feel uncontrollably zoned out after smoking, drink some water or juice to get rid of the extreme feeling. In order to tackle the dryness in your mouth, all you have to do is hydrate yourself immediately.
● Use some pepper. Some people tend to become pretty paranoid after smoking marijuana. Use of a handy ingredient like pepper can help in resolving the issue sometimes. In order to help with that dreadful feeling, you can sniff or chew on some peppercorns. It often provides almost instant relief.
● Try taking a short walk. A change of ambience often helps! Taking a short walk helps the circulation of blood and oxygen into your brain and body. The fresh air also helps in lightening your mood and is good for distracting your mind while you are high.
However, it is advised not to stand up or go for walks if you feel light-headed. In that case, it is best for you to lie down and take some rest.
● Grab some food. To get in touch with reality, you need to lay your hands upon some nutrients and proteins. Eating your fill can help you sober up really quick. An empty stomach can cause you to get more of those panic attacks.
● Take a shower. Taking a bath helps you to relax in a state of high. It freshens the mind up and boosts the energy.
● Use of CBD (cannabidiol) oil. This is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid which apparently helps in reducing anxiety. When CBD enters the body, it reacts with the endocannabinoid system and produces a feeling of calmness.
It is sometimes used with THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) in order to maintain a balance and reduce paranoia.
Side Effects of Making Marijuana a Habit
Medical cannabis has several health benefits like providing relief from chronic pain, nausea, etc. Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) are the main chemicals in medical marijuana. However, the raw form of it can have several side effects which can prove to be calamitous in the long term.
Smoking weed once in a while is perfectly okay, but if you’re not sure of where to draw the line, it becomes a hazard.
According to NIDA (National Institute on Drug Abuse), people tend to become irritable and develop cravings for marijuana when they try to quit smoking. This is commonly known as marijuana use disorder
● Paranoia/anxiety: Cannabis contains psychoactive components like THC that can cause anxiety issues in some individuals, like lowered mood, making one feel vulnerable, etc. Clearly cannabis doesn’t create such issues for everyone.
● Dried-up mouth: It is a common complaint that smoking too much weed causes “cotton-mouth” or excessively dried-up and sticky mouth. Our salivary glands consist of cannabinoid receptors and when we smoke weed, the cannabinoids bind to the receptors. The nervous system doesn’t get the message to keep the saliva flowing, resulting in a persistent thirst.
● Dizziness: Excessive weed intake can adversely affect our everyday productivity. It makes us feel tired and dizzy all throughout the day. It also slows and dulls one’s thinking process.
● Increased pulse rate: THC is responsible for an increase in the heart rate. It expands the blood vessels, which results in low blood pressure. In order to compensate for the low pressure, the heart starts to beat very fast.
● Hallucination: Cannabis has been historically classified as a hallucinogen because of the psychoactive constituent THC. Acute cannabis exposure in a grown-up individual can cause hallucinatory experiences.
● Loss of appetite: The initial side effects of smoking too much weed can include excessive appetite, but in the long term, the consumer will have a loss of appetite and this can cause many serious health issues and weight loss.
● Bloodshot eyes: THC in weed lowers the blood pressure, which in turn causes the blood vessels and capillaries to dilate, which increases blood flow to the eyes and makes them appear red.
Some Long-Term Side Effects
● Fluctuations in mood: Psychoactive drugs on a long-term basis can cause our mood states to change and fluctuate. Although weed is a recreational drug and can provide initial pleasure, it ultimately leads to unpleasant feelings of tension, suspicion, vulnerability, fluctuations in mood, etc.
● Memory loss: Long-term effects of weed can be very adverse! The main psychoactive chemical of cannabis, THC, affects the memory by attaching to the receptors in the brain that are vital for memory formation, including the hippocampus, amygdala, and cerebral cortex.
● Mental retardation: Use of cannabis during the main stages of our brain development can have an adverse effect on the synaptic pruning and can also hinder the development of white matter. Mental retardation also depends on the frequency, dose, and duration of smoking.
Long-term smoking can cause many health hazards like depression, schizophrenia, etc.
● Lung infections: Smoking too much weed can cause chronic bronchitis. The marijuana smoke also injures the cells lining the airways. Therefore, smoking weed can produce phlegm, chronic cough, and other lung infections.
Another potential threat to those with weak immune systems is Aspergillus, a mold that causes lung disorders. It can grow on marijuana, and when smoked, the lungs get exposed to the fungus.
● Decreased libido and fertility: Marijuana affects testosterone levels, therefore dampening the flames of desire in men. It also affects sexual stamina, reduces the sperm count, and may also cause erectile dysfunction.
Smoking weed can also prove to be harmful for women’s reproductive health as it can affect the production of estrogen and delay the ovulation cycle by a few days.
Some of the Key Withdrawal Symptoms
Convincing the person addicted to weed about the negative side effects of marijuana on health can help a great deal. The damage done by marijuana is more psychological than physical. Quitting is one of the hardest parts of the process and there are many withdrawal symptoms like:
● Irritability and tension
● Restlessness and depression
● Stomach aches
● Shaking and sweating
Addiction centres offer therapy to help people overcome the addiction to weed. They also help addicts in coping with the craving after withdrawal. The medical supervision and care offered by professional rehabilitation centres also help people in managing the withdrawal period.
Drug (marijuana) detox supervised by certified physicians can help in erasing the symptoms and the craving can be reduced a great deal.
Key Prescription Marijuana Detox Medications
Some common marijuana detox medications prescribed by drug rehabilitation centres are:
● Baclofen: It inhibits the release of several neurotransmitters such as dopamine, glutamate, and noradrenaline. It works by diminishing the effect of positive sensations associated with drug abuse that cause addiction.
● Vistaril (hydroxyzine): It is generally used to treat itchiness, motion sickness, nausea, and vomiting. It is an antihistamine with drying and sedative properties. This drug is used to help with withdrawal symptoms by reducing anxiety, tension, shaking, and sweating.
● Behavioral and Motivational Enhancement Therapy: People who are addicted are taught to identify and correct problematic behaviour and gain self-control. The therapist tries to motivate the addict for internal change and realization and also in cooperating in the treatment. Frequent monitoring is also a necessary step in the treatment procedure.
Some Concluding Thoughts
Marijuana, when smoked very rarely, adds to the fun of the occasion and ambience. The problem starts when we begin using it so much that we have to adjust our routines and behaviour to accommodate it.
Weed has no immediate effect on our body like alcohol and other more harmful drugs, but eventually it affects the body and mind adversely. Gradually, it starts to affect the everyday routine and it becomes a habit as the addicts need it before sleep or for focusing on something. The fix to the addiction lies in the addict recognizing the problem.
Regular smokers tend to become very defensive about their habit and claim that they are in control of weed, when it is actually the other way around.
Like anything else, if someone chooses to smoke weed, it should be in moderation, keeping in mind how much smoking is actually too much.