Throughout the many years of recreational and medicinal usage, one question often remains: Is marijuana addicting? Studies have been conducted, but it seems that no one clear answer is available to this concern. While many frequent adult users claim that marijuana usage does not affect their daily lives the way addiction typically does, the outcome for habitual adolescent users appears to be different. Perhaps the real question that should be asked is: Is marijuana addicting to teens? For now, this seems to be a matter of opinion, but if you find yourself often asking “is marijuana addicting,” you should conduct some research to educate yourself.
An internet search for the term “is marijuana addicting” will provide you with hundreds of websites you can reference to read viewpoints about both sides of the argument. Many websites cite clear reasoning when asked is marijuana addicting. For example, many websites explain the difference between addictive and habituating. While both of these terms can include the aspects of tolerance and withdrawal, addictive substances tend to cause physiological changes in the body’s functioning that are severely impacted when faced with withdrawal. Websites that use this method of explanation use substances such as alcohol or heroin as examples: When the body experiences addiction and then withdrawal of these substances, medical intervention is often necessary to keep the user stable and healthy. When it comes to marijuana, websites like these explain that marijuana use causes physiological changes in the body, but these changes are not as intense as other substances. While marijuana cessation in some habitual users may cause side effects such as difficulty sleeping or irritability, withdrawal symptoms are not as dangerous or as intense as other substances. These websites explain that the body can still function normally, even though cravings may still exist.
Websites tackling the question “is marijuana addicting to teens?” provide another side to the story. Medical research shows adolescents are still experiencing brain development during teenage years, so using marijuana may have different effects on a younger brain than an adult brain. Earlier usage may cause damage to cognitive functions in the brain in addition to psychological effects. Websites that explain concepts about teen usage also cite statistics from rehabilitation centers, claiming that more and more teens are seeking help for marijuana addiction in the last decade, which might provide some insight into the question: Is marijuana addicting to a younger brain?