Marijuana Addiction Treatment: Understanding Effects and Recovery

Marijuana, a widely used psychoactive substance, has gained popularity in recent years for its recreational and medicinal properties. As its usage increases, so does the need to understand the effects it has on the human body, especially when it comes to addiction and potential risks.

In this definitive guide, we will explore marijuana addiction treatment and how long marijuana stays in your system. Additionally, we will delve into the enigmatic cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome (CHS) and its symptoms, shedding light on a lesser-known aspect of marijuana use.

Marijuana Addiction Treatment Photo

Marijuana Addiction signs and symptoms

Although marijuana addiction may not be as severe as addiction to certain substances, it can still cause significant disruptions in daily life and warrant professional treatment. However, diagnosing marijuana addiction is the domain of healthcare professionals, who rely on criteria outlined in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th edition (DSM-5). To receive a diagnosis of cannabis use disorder, an individual must meet at least two of the following criteria within a 12-month period:

  • Using cannabis in larger amounts or over a longer period than intended.
  • Persistent desire or unsuccessful efforts to cut down or control cannabis use.
  • Spending a great deal of time obtaining, using, or recovering from cannabis use.
  • Experiencing cravings for cannabis.
  • Cannabis use leads to failure to fulfill obligations at work, school, or home.
  • Continued cannabis use despite persistent or recurrent social or interpersonal problems caused or exacerbated by use.
  • Important social, occupational, or recreational activities are given up or reduced due to cannabis use.
  • Recurrent cannabis use occurs in physically hazardous situations.
  • Continued cannabis use despite persistent or recurrent physical or psychological problems caused by or exacerbated by use.
  • Developing cannabis tolerance, requiring higher doses to achieve desired effects.
  • Experiencing withdrawal symptoms when stopping or drastically reducing cannabis use.

If the person doesn’t have such level of severity symptoms from the list above, there is good news for this person – he or she doesn’t have a marijuana addiction. But still there are other forms of discomfort weed may cause such as Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome (CHS), weed hangover, etc (we will tell you about those further in the article). Depending on the frequency of use, amount and form of use, and person’s lifestyle, consuming weed can have a different impact.

Marijuana Addiction Treatment Methods

Marijuana addiction treatment has been extensively studied and proven effective by professionals. People with marijuana use disorders often have a history of long-term daily marijuana use, and many have attempted to quit multiple times. Additionally, those with marijuana use disorders may have co-occurring psychiatric disorders or be addicted to other substances like cocaine or alcohol. National Institute on Drug Abuse suggests the following marijuana addiction treatment approaches:

Behavioral treatments have shown promise in addressing marijuana addiction.

  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy, a form of psychotherapy, teaches individuals strategies to identify and correct problematic behaviors, enhancing self-control and addressing related issues. Contingency management, another effective approach, involves frequent monitoring of behaviors and the provision or removal of tangible, positive rewards to reinforce desired changes.
  • Motivational enhancement therapy is a systematic intervention designed to produce rapid, internally motivated change, mobilizing individuals’ internal resources for engagement in treatment and change. These behavioral treatments have demonstrated efficacy in reducing marijuana use, especially among heavy users and those with chronic mental disorders.

Medications That the Physician may prescribe to Marijuana addiction patients

While there are no FDA-approved medications specifically for marijuana use disorder, research in this area is active. Some studies focus on medications to address sleep problems associated with marijuana withdrawal.

Promising medications include zolpidem (Ambien®), buspirone (BuSpar®), and gabapentin (Horizant®, Neurontin®), which may improve sleep and executive function. N-acetylcysteine, a nutritional supplement, and FAAH inhibitors, which reduce withdrawal by inhibiting the breakdown of the body’s own cannabinoids, are also being studied.

Looking ahead, research is exploring the potential of allosteric modulators, substances that interact with cannabinoid receptors to inhibit the rewarding effects of THC. These findings pave the way for more targeted and effective treatments for marijuana use disorders, addressing the unique challenges posed by this form of addiction.

By combining evidence-based behavioral therapies and potential medications, professionals are making significant strides in helping individuals overcome marijuana addiction and achieve lasting recovery.

Marijuana Addiction Recovery: How Long Does It Take?

The duration of marijuana addiction recovery is influenced by several key factors, including the individual’s addiction severity, personal circumstances, treatment approach, and commitment to the recovery process. Professionals emphasize that recovery timelines can vary significantly from person to person. However, there are some general considerations to keep in mind:

  • Addiction Severity: The extent of marijuana use and the presence of co-occurring disorders can impact the recovery timeline. Individuals with long-term daily marijuana use and multiple unsuccessful attempts to quit may require more time and intensive treatment.
  • Treatment Approach: The chosen treatment approach plays a crucial role in recovery duration. Evidence-based behavioral therapies, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy, contingency management, and motivational enhancement therapy, have shown effectiveness in reducing marijuana use and supporting long-term recovery.
  • Personal Commitment: An individual’s dedication and motivation to overcome addiction greatly influence recovery speed. Engaging actively in treatment, attending support groups, and making lifestyle changes contribute to positive outcomes.
  • Support System: The presence of a strong support system, including family, friends, and support groups, can enhance recovery progress and provide a sense of accountability.
  • Co-Occurring Disorders: Addressing any co-occurring mental health issues, like anxiety or depression, can positively impact the recovery journey.
  • Timeline: While some individuals may experience significant progress within a few weeks or months, achieving sustained recovery from marijuana addiction often requires a more extended period.

Professionals stress that there is no fixed timeline for marijuana addiction recovery. Each person’s journey is unique, and recovery is a gradual process that requires patience and perseverance. Seeking professional help, participating in evidence-based therapies, and building a strong support network are essential steps toward achieving lasting sobriety and improved overall well-being.

Marijuana Addiction Statistics

According to a scientific article published in 2018, approximately 10% of regular cannabis users develop a marijuana use disorder. This highlights the significance of understanding the prevalence and impact of marijuana addiction, especially among adults.

The National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) reported that in 2016, approximately 4 million adults aged 12 or older in the United States were addicted to marijuana, making it the most common addiction among illicit drugs (source: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration).

Moreover, studies have shown that marijuana addiction is particularly prevalent among adults seeking treatment, with many having used marijuana nearly every day for over 10 years.

These statistics underscore the importance of raising awareness about marijuana addiction in the adult population and implementing effective prevention and treatment strategies to address this public health concern.

How Long Does Marijuana Stay in the System?

When someone consumes marijuana, it enters the bloodstream, carrying its active compounds, particularly tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). The body’s metabolism processes THC, breaking it down into various metabolites, some of which are stored in tissues and organs. This breakdown process varies among individuals and influences how long marijuana remains detectable in the system.

System Detection Time
Blood Up to 24 hours
Urine Up to 30 days for chronic users
Saliva Up to 72 hours
Hair Up to 90 days (or longer)

Several factors impact the duration of marijuana in the system, including frequency of use, method of consumption, body fat percentage, and individual metabolism. Regular users may have accumulated THC in their body tissues, leading to a longer detection window when it comes to a drug test.

Marijuana can be detected in the bloodstream shortly after consumption, typically within minutes to a few hours. However, the duration varies depending on individual factors. In urine, THC and its metabolites can be detected for up to 30 days after last use, especially in chronic users.

The duration of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) in the human body can significantly impact a person’s overall feeling, particularly when experiencing weed intoxication. THC is the primary psychoactive compound in marijuana, and its effects on the body and mind are closely linked to its presence and activity in the system.

How Long Do THC Edibles Last In Your System?

When it comes to THC gummies or edibles, the duration of detection in the system may be longer compared to smoking or vaping. THC in edibles takes longer to be absorbed and processed by the body, leading to a prolonged detection window.

Side Effects of THC Edibles

THC edibles, such as cookies, gummies, and brownies, have become increasingly popular due to their discreet nature and longer-lasting effects. However, their delayed onset and potency can lead to unexpected side effects.

Consuming THC edibles can result in a range of side effects, including anxiety, paranoia, dizziness, dry mouth, and impaired motor skills. The delayed onset of these effects can lead to overconsumption and Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome, further exacerbating the adverse reactions.

Proper dosage and responsible consumption are crucial when using THC edibles. Users must carefully read product labels, adhere to recommended servings, and allow sufficient time for the effects to manifest before considering additional doses.

Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome (CHS)

Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome (CHS) is a rare condition linked to long-term marijuana use. It is characterized by recurrent episodes of severe nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain. The exact cause of CHS is not fully understood, making it a subject of ongoing research.

While the exact mechanisms behind CHS remain uncertain, it is believed that prolonged exposure to THC can disrupt the endocannabinoid system, leading to the development of this syndrome in susceptible individuals.

CHS is more commonly reported in long-term, heavy marijuana users. Individuals who use marijuana multiple times per day for several years are at a higher risk of developing this syndrome. It appears to affect men and women equally, and the age of onset can vary widely.

Weed Hangover Symptoms

While marijuana is not considered as physically addictive as some drugs, heavy and long-term use can lead to mild withdrawal symptoms when use is discontinued. Common withdrawal symptoms may include:

  • irritability
  • mood swings
  • insomnia
  • decreased appetite

A weed hangover, also known as a “greening out,” refers to the after-effects of marijuana use, such as:

  • grogginess
  • fatigue
  • brain fog

Individuals experiencing withdrawal symptoms or a weed hangover can benefit from staying hydrated, getting enough rest, engaging in relaxation techniques, such as meditation or deep breathing exercises, and most importantly, abstaining from weed.

Detox Methods Used to Eliminate THC from Your System

Whether you want to start treating marijuana addiction or eliminate its unpleasant aftereffects, there are a variety of natural home remedies to speed up the process like diuretic drinks, detox teas, and special dietary adjustments (read doctors’ recommendations in our article).

Another way is using detox drinks. These are specifically created to detox the body from THC fast and with a minimum of withdrawal symptoms. The most reputable options on the market still are Detoxify Mega Clean (or its milder version Ready Clean), Herbal Clean’s products like QCarbo 32, etc.

For those who prefer a pill for THC detox (which basically has the same detoxifying mechanism as detox drinks have), there is also an article about this method.


Marijuana can have lasting effects on the body and mind, and understanding its impact is crucial for responsible use and potential treatment.

If you or someone you know is grappling with marijuana addiction, seeking professional help and support is essential for a successful recovery journey.

Responsible marijuana consumption involves understanding its effects, following dosage guidelines, and being aware of potential risks. Education and responsible use can help reduce adverse effects and promote healthier outcomes.

In conclusion, this definitive guide provides valuable insights into marijuana addiction treatment, the duration of marijuana in the system, and the enigmatic cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome. By equipping readers with essential information, we aim to foster informed decisions and promote healthier habits surrounding marijuana use and its potential effects. Remember, seeking professional help and support is a crucial step for individuals struggling with marijuana addiction, as it can lead to a successful journey toward recovery and improved well-being.