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The Devastating Effects of Marijuana Abuse

1 in 10 users of marijuana will develop an addiction

Marijuana, also known as cannabis, is a commonly used drug that can cause both short-term and long-term damage to an individual’s physical, mental, and emotional well-being.

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If you are struggling with marijuana it is essential to seek medical help and support immediately. Recovery Centers of America’s team of medical and mental health professionals is here to provide comprehensive addiction care to help you overcome substance use disorder and achieve long-term recovery.

  • Contact 1-800-RECOVERY to speak with a treatment advocate 24/7/365
  • No cost intervention services available exclusively through RCA
  • Verify your insurance benefits here
  • One of our transportation specialists will pick you up wherever you are in 2 hours or less

Don’t wait another day to get the help you need. Contact the RCA team today to begin the journey towards a healthy, fulfilling life. We are committed to supporting you every step of the way, providing personalized treatment options and evidence-based therapies to help you achieve your goals.

Together, we can overcome your marijuana addiction and build a brighter future.

Contact Recovery Centers of America now and take the first step towards long-lasting recovery.


Recovery from marijuana is possible with professional help, and support from family and loved ones. It’s essential to seek professional treatment to overcome marijuana addiction, and Recovery Centers of America provides comprehensive support and care that is both empathetic and effective. 

At RCA, we identify the SOURCE of addiction and offer customized treatment that eliminates the SYMPTOMS and addresses the day-to-day societal CONTRIBUTORS that get in the way. 

Our clinical treatment program includes:

  • Diagnostic assessment: A healthcare professional will assess the severity of addiction, including physical and mental health, family history, and co-occurring disorders.
  • Medically monitored detoxification in a safe and comfortable environment
  • Individualized Treatment Plan: Addiction treatment can include a range of services, including medication-assisted treatment, behavioral therapy, group therapy, and family therapy.
  • Skills-based coaching: The development of skills and strategies to prevent relapse and address triggers or temptations that may arise during recovery.
  • Introduction to the 12-step program: Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous can provide encouragement and support from others who have experienced a similar struggle.
  • Alumni Services: A supportive community of individuals who are in recovery that offer continued support, networking opportunities, and resources to help maintain long-term recovery.

Our caring and experienced staff are dedicated to providing personalized care to each person struggling with addiction to promote a healthy and sustainable recovery.

Don’t let marijuana control your life – contact Recovery Centers of America today to get the help you or your loved one needs to start on the path to recovery.

Marijuana Addiction Statistics

Approximately half of Americans, some 78 million people, claimed to have used marijuana at some point in their lifetime.

1 in 10 users of marijuana will develop an addiction

Long-term marijuana use can lead to respiratory problems, memory impairment, and other cognitive changes

Marijuana use has been linked to an increased risk of psychosis, including schizophrenia, especially in individuals who start using at a young age

How Marijuana Impacts Your Life


Marijuana use can lead to significant physical health problems, including respiratory problems, lung infections, and heart disease. Research suggests that chronic use of marijuana can also impair brain development, particularly in younger individuals, leading to impairments in memory and cognitive function.


Marijuana abuse can cause severe psychological problems, particularly in individuals who use it regularly or heavily. The drug can alter mood, creating feelings of anxiety, paranoia, and even depression.


Marijuana addiction can cause financial stress as individuals prioritize the purchase of the drug over essential needs such as bills, rent, and daily expenses, leading to financial hardships.


Marijuana addiction can impact personal relationships and social life, causing social isolation and detachment from loved ones. Heavily dependence on marijuana can cause difficulty in fulfilling professional and social responsibilities and lead to decreased productivity, financial loss, or even job loss.

What is marijuana?

Marijuana comes from cannabis plants, native to Central and South Asia. The plant’s leaves, flowers, stem, and seeds are all rich in THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), the major chemical that creates the drug’s psychoactive effects.

THC affects brain receptors associated with memory, pleasure, coordination, and judgment. When these receptors are stimulated, the classic marijuana “high” takes effect, typically accompanied by distorted sensual perceptions, changes in mood, and impairment of mental functioning.

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What is the history of cannabis?

Recreational and religious cannabis use goes back literally thousands of years. Charred seeds have been found in a ritual brazier in Romania, at a burial site dated to the third millennium BC. At about the same time (roughly 2700 BC), the Chinese medical encyclopedia Pen Ts’ao, compiled by emperor Shen-Nung, referred to ma (the Chinese name for cannabis) as a medicine that uniquely balanced yin and yang forces. The drug was recommended for treating menstrual cramps, gout, rheumatism, malaria, and (ironically enough, given that modern medical science considers marijuana use a potential source of permanent memory damage) absentmindedness. In the early second century, Chinese doctor Hua T’o used cannabis as a surgical anesthetic.

The drug got considerably less respect in mid-twentieth-century America, where it became associated with teenage rebellion and getting high for the fun of it. Use was illegal throughout the United States until 1996, when California approved marijuana for use in medicine. Currently, twenty-nine states and the District of Columbia allow some level of legal use; as of late 2017, however, the drug remains a Schedule I substance (no recognized medical use) under federal law. The FDA does recognize two cannabis-derived nausea medications, dronabinol and nabilone.

What are the side effects of marijuana use?

Marijuana affects virtually every part of the body and nervous system. Common physical reactions include red eyes, dilated pupils, dry mouth, increased appetite, dizziness, a distorted sense of time and place, hallucinations, accelerated heart rate (sometimes to double speed), and slowed reaction times.

Initial effects of a single dose last only a few hours, but regular users may also develop chronic coughing or respiratory infections from frequent smoking. If they continue using for the long term, other effects that may eventually surface include heart and blood pressure problems, lung damage, impaired memory, panic attacks, flashbacks, sexual dysfunction, or cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome (chronic and severe vomiting).

What are some historical and medicinal uses for marijuana?

Traditionally, marijuana’s mind-altering effect made it a popular tool for inducing mystic experiences. As noted above, it was also used in classic Chinese medicine.

Today, Western medicine is exploring new options for medical use of marijuana, particularly in relieving chronic pain. Other medical conditions for which a doctor might prescribe marijuana include multiple sclerosis, digestive difficulties, seizure disorders, glaucoma, and Crohn’s disease.

How is marijuana used illicitly?

Outside of medically monitored use, marijuana is most commonly smoked in hand-rolled cigarettes (joints), pipes, or vaporizers. Some smokers opt for “blunts” (cigars in which some or all of the tobacco has been replaced with marijuana). Other users take it in tea or mixed with food—a potential risk if someone used to the quicker effects of inhalation eats more with the idea of speeding things up.

A more dangerous approach is “dabbing,” which involves smoking marijuana resins heated with butane, and delivers a much stronger THC dose than the standard marijuana derived from solid parts of the plant.

Marijuana remains the most commonly used illicit drug in the United States. It is smoked recreationally to induce euphoric or spiritual experiences, and as self-medication by chronic-pain sufferers who can’t obtain legal medical marijuana.

What are the signs of marijuana use?

Symptoms of frequent use include: bloodshot eyes, lethargy, fast heart rate, increased appetite, strange odors on clothes or breath, mental confusion, and hyperactivity.

What are the signs of marijuana addiction?

The signs and symptoms of marijuana addiction and dependence (marijuana use disorder) include: loss of interest in usual activities, increased secretiveness, mood and sleep difficulties, and irritability.

What are the symptoms of using too much marijuana or a marijuana overdose?

Symptoms of a marijuana overdose (frequently from “dabbing”—but as with many illicit drugs, the more common form of marijuana has become stronger and thus riskier than it was a generation or two ago) include: severe agitation, vivid hallucinations, psychosis, hammering heart, pale complexion, gasping for breath, and severe shakiness. While marijuana overdoses are rarely fatal in themselves, they may trigger suicidal or psychotic behavior and even cardiac arrest. Call for emergency medical help.

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