Marijuana Treatment: Getting Marijuana Addiction Treatment
Some marijuana users can quit weed without professional help, but many find official marijuana treatment beneficial for long term marijuana recovery. Treatment for marijuana addiction can be found in-person, through books or online. Different types of marijuana addiction treatment work for different people, but the important thing is to acknowledge the need for marijuana addiction help.
Marijuana Treatment: Medical Treatment for Weed Addiction
Inpatient marijuana treatment isn't generally needed during marijuana withdrawal or recovery, but marijuana addicts can still benefit from medical marijuana addiction help. Of particular importance is an initial visit to a medical professional when deciding to quit pot. At this time in marijuana treatment, a doctor should do an initial evaluation looking for any damage done by drug use (read: marijuana side effects) or any other disorders that need to be handled during treatment for marijuana addiction.
Of particular concern in marijuana recovery is mental illness. Mental illness commonly occurs in pot addicts, often because the user is attempting to self-medicate their mental illness, but when the person gets marijuana addiction treatment, the mental illness symptoms become apparent. Moreover, pot addiction treatment removes the one way the person may know to deal with the symptoms of their mental illness. Returning to pot to medicate a mental illness can completely undermine treatment for weed addiction.
Medical treatment for weed addiction does not typically include medication prescriptions unless other disorders are also present. No medication has been shown to be effective in marijuana treatment or marijuana recovery.1
Marijuana Treatment: Treatment for Marijuana Withdrawal
Some doctors disagree on the specific marijuana withdrawal symptoms to be expected. However, marijuana withdrawal has been shown to have some of the same symptoms as tobacco withdrawal, but with considerably milder symptoms. Medical treatment for marijuana withdrawal symptoms is not typically required. Marijuana recovery may include some of the following marijuana withdrawal symptoms:
- Anger, aggression, irritation
- Anxiety, restlessness, nervousness, paranoia
- Decreased appetite, weight loss
- Difficulty sleeping
- Physical discomfort
While time is often considered the best marijuana treatment for withdrawal, support during the two-week period expected for withdrawal is also helpful. Marijuana treatment programs and marijuana treatment professionals can also be helpful during withdrawal.
Marijuana Treatment: Therapy and Marijuana Recovery
Marijuana withdrawal symptoms may be over in two weeks, but changing drug-related behavior can take time during marijuana treatment. Therapy during marijuana treatment has been shown to decrease relapse and create long-lasting marijuana recovery. Common therapies found in marijuana treatment include:
- Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) - designed to challenge, and ultimately change, thoughts and behaviors around marijuana use. Stress tolerance and other skills are also taught.
- Motivational interviewing (MI) - focuses on creating and fostering motivation to not use marijuana during marijuana recovery. Successful drug screenings are rewarded with "points" the addict can trade for reward.
- Psychotherapy - individual, family or group therapy may be used. Therapy focuses on relationships, interpersonal skills and other psychological issues.
Marijuana Treatment: Marijuana Treatment Programs
Some marijuana treatment programs can be found online or in books. However, drug-specific, in-person marijuana treatment programs are uncommon in North America. Marijuana treatment programs may be available as a part of other drug treatment programs, however. Any drug addiction treatment facility is likely to have applicable services.
Formal marijuana treatment programs offer medical and personal support with therapy, education and often, skills training.
While not formal marijuana treatment programs, many find addiction support groups helpful during marijuana recovery. A common group is Narcotics Anonymous where addicts support each other through drug treatment and recovery.
Last Updated: 21 June 2016
Reviewed by Harry Croft, MD