In an extensive article about teenagers and marijuana addiction, Macleans of Canada cites a study conducted by the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse which was published in 2017. Canada has been a leader in radical drug policy, offering many controversial and alternative treatment options to its citizens in an effort to reduce addiction and save lives. Like many other areas around the world, Canada is facing the debate on legalizing recreational marijuana and one of the primary points of concern is: what about the kids? Though marijuana has many compelling arguments as a medical health option, there are still many arguments against making recreational marijuana available. Young people like adolescents and teenagers have been vulnerable when it comes to marijuana. Considered a ‘soft drug’ young people start experimenting with marijuana early. However, what many adults and young people alike don’t realize is that marijuana, though harmless enough not to cause an overdose, marijuana can cause severe chemical dependency. Complete with paranoia, psychosis, anxiety, depression, as well as withdrawals, the symptoms of marijuana dependency can be intense and difficult to manage. The study by the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse discovered that, according to the article, “…a majority of youth were unaware that cannabis can be addictive and lead to withdrawal symptoms.” Young people, the survey found, “…are better able to list what they consider to be the benefits of cannabis than the harms.” Kids largely think that marijuana is only an alternative medical option full of healthy benefits. Parents try to stay informed about drugs and how drugs might affect their children. Since the widespread stereotype of marijuana is that it causes no harm, parents might be quick to dismiss their teens’ use of the drug as normal. Parents who have witnessed the onset of marijuana dependency in their children know that marijuana can cause harm. Teens and adolescents become moody, irritable, detached, disconnected, distant, anxious, depressed, withdrawn, angry, and changed. Kids aren’t aware of these possible effects because they aren’t often discussed. Educating yourselves as parents is the first step toward educating your teens about the possible side effects of marijuana and the risk of marijuana dependency.
If you have a son who has become chemically dependent on marijuana, there is help available. Stonewater Adolescent Recovery Center offers long term residential treatment programs for teenage and adolescent males in need of recovery. Taking a mind, body, spirit approach, our programs build a positive foundation while providing life cleansing therapies to purify and rebuild. Call us today for information on our programs: 662-598-4214.