Marijuana is absolutely addictive for some vulnerable individuals. Read More
Alcohol is absolutely addictive for some vulnerable individuals
An article just published in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM--see reference below) states that 9 percent of marijuana users will become addicted to it and that cannabis withdrawal syndrome is real, given that heavy users will experience cravings, anxiety, irritability, dysphoria, and sleeping difficulties when they abruptly stop marijuana.
How does this compare to coffee?
The article — which is well written and cites numerous previous studies — notes that those who start smoking in adolescence are 2 - 4 times more likely to eventually become dependent on it and that heavy marijuana use over the course of one’s life is linked to earning a lower income, having greater need for public assistance, being unemployed, and having a lower satisfaction with life. Even though many of my patients who smoke marijuana are gainfully employed and quite happy with their lives, these findings jibe with my overall observations of those who I know who consume cannibis
What percentage of the US population fits in the (earning a lower income, having greater need for public assistance, being unemployed, and having a lower satisfaction with life) group? And what are you willing to assume it would be if Pot did not exist?
I started when I was 15. Slacked-off from ages 25-40 and began again 1 year ago...about 2-3 times a week in very limited amounts. I'm a high income earner, involved Father and a devoted Husband. I do not drink. There are many folks like me.
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Wes Boyd is on faculty at Harvard Medical School and is an Attending Psychiatrist at Cambridge Health Alliance and Children’s Hospital Boston.
When and how should we open up to loved ones?