Is Medical Marijuana Addictive?

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July 24, 2018
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July 24, 2018

Is Medical Marijuana Addictive?

Medical Marijuana

Medical Marijuana

With around 38 states and 3 territories having legalized medical use of marijuana, people are more curious to know if this drug is addictive? Is the use of cannabis products associated with dependence? Does a user feel withdrawal symptoms when not using the drug?

The short answer is ‘yes’! ‘Marijuana use disorder’ is the health condition resulting from the regular use of cannabis. Recent research data suggests about 30% of individuals using medical marijuana face some degree of this addictive disorder.

Did you know? About 4 million marijuana users were diagnosed with marijuana use disorder in the US in 2015 alone! Of them, about 138,000 people voluntarily sought treatment for their addictive disorder.

Medical Marijuana

Medical Marijuana

According to the findings of the National Institute on Drug Abuse, weed users who are below the age of 18 are 4 to 7 times more prone to develop a marijuana use disorder than adults.

Marijuana addictive condition is linked to dependence on the drug, in which a hashish consumer develops withdrawal symptoms when not taking the drug.

What are Withdrawal Symptoms Marijuana Users Report after Quitting the Drug?

Frequent users of cannabis report various withdrawal symptoms, such as:

  • Mood swings and sleep difficulties
Mood Swing

Mood Swing

  • Restlessness
  • Irritability
  • Decreased appetite
  • Cravings


  • and various other forms of physical discomfort

Medical marijuana users face the above symptoms within the first week after quitting the drug. These mental and physical discomforts may last up to 2 weeks.

When Does Marijuana Dependence Occur?



Cannabis dependence occurs when your brain adapts to larger intakes of the drug. As a result, your brain decreases the production of and sensitivity to its own endocannabinoid neurotransmitters.

Is it Possible to be Dependent on Marijuana without being Addicted?

When the use of medical marijuana interferes with various aspects of your life but you are unable to stop its use, you will be diagnosed to be suffering from marijuana use disorder.

Here it is interesting to note that it is possible to be dependent on pot without being addicted. It is because epidemiological researches on the use of ganja or Mary Jane (alternative names for marijuana) often term dependence as a proxy for addiction.

Such studies suggest about 9% users of dope or bhang (street names for cannabis) will become dependent on the drug after taking heavy doses. And this percentage is almost doubled (17%) for people using it in their teens.

More on Addictive Properties of Marijuana Clones

With opiate treatments being extremely addictive if abused with considerable risks of overdose and withdrawal, it’s vital to either verify that marijuana clones even the best in class can have addictive properties or to prove false the belief.

Psychological Addiction vs Physiological Dependency:

Psychological Addiction

Psychological Addiction

Certain strains of medical cannabis might have a psychological addiction but it doesn’t bring about physiologic dependency, hence, not a true addiction.

Long-term Consumption: Reports of marijuana consumers generally show that most don’t become long-term consumers. In the 1990’s, reports revealed that even though thirty of Americans twelve years and older had tried marijuana at some point, only one percent of Americans used pot on a daily or near-daily basis.

Drug Treatment Program

Drug Treatment Program

Drug Treatment Program

It’s not unheard of for heavy habitual pot users to enroll in a drug treatment program for hemp dependence. There is a big difference, however, between an addiction to pot and a true addiction.

Common Symptoms: Are there any withdrawal symptoms when an everyday user quits smoking? The answer is – probably – ‘yes’. Some folks report anxiety and some sleep interruption – about fifteen percent of the time. But you don’t see the vomiting, nausea, hallucinations, and sweating, etc. that is usually seen from narcotic withdrawal.

Research on Animals: In animal studies looking at high dosage cannabis administration, irrespective of how much of the drug is administered, animals don’t self-administer the drug after stopping. Narcotics, however, are a different story.

Congressional Report



In 1991, a congressional report from the United States Department of Human and Health Services stated: “Given the increased number of cannabis users and the rare reports of medical problems from stopping use, dependence and tolerance aren’t key issues at present.”

The point here is that pot may bring about psychological addiction, but not physiological and physical dependency. Narcotics bring about both and even if an addict is capable of overcoming the psychological reliance to the drug, the simple fact that the side effects are severe might prevent being able to stop at all.

Luckily cannabis doesn’t act in that fashion. Even after prolonged heavy use, there is negligible if any physiologic effect upon termination. Cannabis acts on the human brain in a different pathway than opiate treatments. This might allow medical marijuana being used to successfully reduce the amount of opiates patients need for pain control, and in some cases completely substitute them.

Similarly, medicinal pot has a psychoactive effect of reducing nervousness and improving disposition. This is different from opiates, where patients might see a reduction in pain but also might see a depressing effect. This explains why so many chronic pain patients need to take antidepressant prescriptions along with the narcotics.


What are the bad things about medical marijuana?

The bad thing about medical marijuana is that it has various side effects, the most common being:

  • Nausea
  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness
  • Fatigue, and
  • Light-headedness

Some of these side effects are moderate or mild and stop quickly. Others are severer and take longer to recover.

What are the main benefits of medical marijuana?

According to research findings published by Johnson & Wales University, there are 7 main benefits of medical marijuana:

Marijuana can fight various cancers, treat tumors, and strengthen your immune system

CBD – a cannabinoid chemical in cannabis – is used to treat anxiety disorders

Lowers your blood pressure

Prevents and treats gastrointestinal disorders, such as irritable bowel syndrome

Reduces inflammation and neuropathic pain

Prevents relapse in drug addiction cases

Treats epilepsy and other seizure syndromes

What is considered heavy marijuana use?

When you daily or near-daily use cannabis at an amount that’s sufficient to induce intoxication, you’ll be considered a heavy marijuana user. If you use that much dose of marijuana for years, your condition will be described as prolonged or chronic.

Is full spectrum CBD addictive?

Yes, full spectrum CBD may cause addiction. Like cocaine and nicotine, cannabidiol (CBD) is inherently addictive. Its regular use will increase tolerance, requiring you to take higher doses to feel the same effects.

Need More Help?

Have questions regarding the addictive properties of medical marijuana? Or want to buy healthy clones of your favorite strain (including Cannabis sativa) to produce CBD or THC at home? Just get in touch here at Big Daddy Clones! We are a phone call away at  877-262-6192.