Where Addiction Meets Your Brain

The Neurobiology of Addiction

More About Marijuana

Educational Pieces About Marijuana

The last time I blogged about marijuana, I instantly became the target of attacks by some of the readers, which I relish, since my job is to put out the truth and let the chips fly. If people choose not to believe me, that is their business, and in the age of the blogosphere, anonymous attacks make me free game for the masses. I would like to give everyone a clear target today as I continue to educate people about cannabis.

Facts:

  1. Cannabis is addictive to a percentage of the population.
  2. There is a significant correlation between marijuana use and subsequent psychosis
  3. There is a significant correlation between marijuana use and adolescent brain damage
  4. There is a significant correlation between marijuana use and depression
  5. There is a significant correlation between marijuana use and suicide
  6. There is a significant correlation between marijuana use and subsequent “heavier drug” use

So for those of you out there who are going to write vitriolic letters telling me that cannabis is safer than alcohol, please save your time and energy. I am not comparing cannabis to any other substances. Alcohol kills people, heroin kills people, and cigarettes kill people. I fully agree on all of that. No question about it.

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Next, anybody that wants to use substances is not going to get a letter or call from me that you shouldn’t be doing it. In all the addiction treatment settings where I work or have worked, there are no shortages of individuals needing treatment, so my job is secure with or without your participation. All I am asking is that you don’t write hate mail to me when I tell you the facts. “You want the truth? You can’t handle the truth!”

If you are happy with your cannabis use, do not let me affect your denial system. If you are convinced that the 200 psychoactive ingredients are ok with your brain and help you, please continue your pleasurable trips. If it helps your pain better than aspirin, great!

If, however, you are having a problem with your use like the other people that I see every day, we are here to help you. 

Joseph Troncale, M.D. FASAM, has been working in addiction medicine for 20 years. He is the Medical Director of the Retreat.
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