What is Marijuana?

Marijuana comes from the cannabis plant. The potency of this drug and its appearance can differ greatly but essentially this term is used to refer to the buds, leaves and stems of the cannabis.

Other forms include hashish and hash oil which are processed forms of the plant’s buds and leaves. These also includes a variety of types with the former usually appearing in resin-like blocks and the latter as a gooey substance.

The main active ingredient in cannabis is THC or Tetrahydrocannabinol. This chemical compound causes most of the drug’s effects and is the substance that induces dependence.

When someone smokes marijuana, THC rapidly floods the system and attaches to brain’s cannabinoid receptors. The highest density of cannabinoid receptors are found in the areas of the brain that control pleasure, memory, time perception and coordinated movement.

The natural EC system is finely tuned to react to incoming information but the invading THC overpowers it. It prevents the natural chemicals from doing their job properly and throws the whole system out of balance.

Marijuana is one of the most widely used drugs in the world and is commonly thought of as being harmless. It is usually smoked but can also be eaten.

Street Names for Marijuana

An extensive number of nicknames are used for marijuana and these sometimes echo the different forms it comes in and the ways it can be smoked.

  • Pot
  • Weed
  • Grass
  • Ganga
  • Dope
  • Herb
  • Hash
  • Mary Jane
  • Buds
  • Skunk
  • Cannabis
  • Reefer
  • Joint
  • Blunt
  • Bong

History of Marijuana

The writing of Chinese emperor Shen Nung in 2737 BC refer to a cannabis product as a medication for rheumatism, gout, malaria, and absent-mindedness. The intoxicating effects were noted too but it was clearly valued as a medicinal substance. The use of marijuana was also well documented throughout India during this time.

In 1545 the Spanish brought marijuana to the Americas. The English introduced it in Jamestown in 1611 where it became a major commercial crop alongside tobacco and was grown as a source of fibre.

By 1890, hemp had been replaced by cotton as a major cash crop in southern states. Some patent medicines during this era contained marijuana but it was a small percentage compared those containing opium or cocaine.

It was during the 1920’s that marijuana began to catch on as a recreational drug. Some historians say its popularity in America was brought about by Prohibition and the emerging jazz scene.

The legality of this drug can vary greatly from country to country. For example, Holland is renowned for its tolerant approach while America classifies marijuana alongside marijuana. It is also worth noting that in some states in America, doctors can prescribe medical marijuana for a number of conditions.

What are the Effects of Marijuana Addiction?

Marijuana is both physically and psychologically addictive and has a significant impact on short and long term brain chemistry.

There is also emerging evidence that are strong links between marijuana use and mental health issues such as psychosis, anxiety, depression and schizophrenia especially if an individual has a prior disposition towards these.

Every addict’s path into addiction varies. This is a complex disease with many underlying layers which coupled together with trauma, abuse, depression and anxiety make it difficult to diagnose and treat without effective residential addiction treatment.

People who become addicted to marijuana can experience the same negative consequences as those addicted to harder drugs. This can comprise of increased tolerance, physical or emotional dependence, and withdrawal symptoms.


  • Suppression of the immune system
  • Reduction of male sex hormones and possible impotency
  • Growth disorders
  • Respiratory difficulties
  • Damage to the lungs if smoked
  • Decreased memory and attention span
  • Changes in the brain chemistry – short term
  • Changes in the structure and function of the brain – long term
  • Neglecting personal hygiene
  • Disturbed sleep
  • Unhealthy eating habits
  • Cravings
  • Tolerance


  • Psychosis
  • Triggers
  • Compulsion
  • Obsession
  • Lying to yourself/denial


  • Apathy /Exhaustion
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Memory loss
  • Mood Swings
  • Paranoia
  • Fear
  • Loneliness


  • Lack of interest in activities once enjoyed
  • Lack of interest in work/school
  • Lack of interest and ability in maintain relationships/friendships
  • Damaged relationships with family members
  • Isolation
  • Lying to others


  • Damaged self-esteem and self-worth
  • Damaged relationship with self
  • Lack of interest in life
  • Inability to function without the drug
  • Continued use despite negative consequences

The signs and symptoms of marijuana addiction get progressively worse over time and there will be no resolution until effective addiction treatment and aftercare are sought.

Marijuana Withdrawal at Hader Clinic

Marijuana addiction withdrawal treatment is very specific and symptoms may vary in severity and duration depending on the client. Usually these are both psychologically uncomfortable and physically unpleasant.

Accurate assessment by our capable medical team determines if our clients require a medicated period of detoxification.  This will depend on the individual’s circumstances and symptoms are always closely monitored by our skilled clinical and medical staff and treated accordingly.

Our team is highly experienced in providing safe and effective marijuana detox programs. They aim to keep clients as comfortable and supported as possible so they can participate in the program.

At every stage of the process, clients are monitored, evaluated and their successes acknowledged. This really helps our staff to respond to what is going on for the clients and helps to instill an ever-growing sense of self-esteem and a new found confidence.


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