The first time Jessica took a hit of marijuana, it seemed innocent enough. It came with a high, feeling good, and easing the stress in life. And there was no pressure to smoke by any of her friends. There was just an offer, and she was curious. She wanted to know what it felt like, so she said yes. After she accepted the joint passed to her, she started to feel odd. Suddenly, everything was funny.
A few days later, Jessica was out with her friends again and they got high. They also got drunk. It wasn’t a good choice. She got so drunk and so high that it made her feel ill. Jessica knew at that point marijuana wasn’t good for her. So she stopped…for six months.
A friend casually offered her some pot again. It was another feeling of innocence. Why not? But this time she was hooked and marijuana became a crutch to deal with life. It became a way to manage all her emotions and heavy situations. Marijuana became her best friend, morning and evening. It was a way to make it through school. Until one day, Jessica realized something was wrong.
She was in class and she was not feeling well at all. Her teacher asked her what was going on. With a sort of deadly look, her teacher accused her of doing drugs and that she better not be coming to class high. That horrendous look stayed in Jessica’s mind for the rest of the day. Until finally she asked herself, “Who am I becoming?”
She realized that there was a major problem. She was behind in school and she felt like she needed to pull her life back together. She felt like she needed to make a major change but that she couldn’t do it on her own. Although she wanted to tell her parents about it, Jessica couldn’t face the disappointment they would feel. So, she spoke to an older friend she could trust. She also told a close friend, and together they decided to quit, and they did.
But some teens aren’t that lucky. They aren’t able to quit so easily. When there is marijuana abuse, there is often a need for treatment. That could be therapy or a support group or working with a teen drug counselor. Sometimes, teen marijuana abuse requires attending a teen drug rehab center.
Studies show that if an adult started to use marijuana as a teenager, he or she is more likely to develop an addiction. A 2010 article in the Los Angeles Times pointed out that 9% of people who use the drug develop an addiction to it. This is compared to 15% of people who become addicted to cocaine and alcohol. And research indicates that the earlier a person begins to use the drug, the more likely he or she will become dependent on it. Also, dependency will develop within two years for 17% of those who began smoking marijuana at ages 14 or 15.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)’s February 2014 report of drug use in Los Angeles County, marijuana was reported as “the primary drug problem” with 27.2% of drug rehab treatment admissions for marijuana addiction or dependency. Plus, more than half (59%) of drug rehab treatment admissions were for teens. Furthermore, marijuana was identified in 30.8% of drug reports analyzed in laboratories. Lastly, marijuana ranked second in the list of illicit drugs reported in the poison control system.
If you’re like Jessica, who was once caught in the cycle of teen marijuana abuse and addiction, using it like a crutch to deal with life, you might need teen drug addiction treatment. You can do what Jessica did, which is to find someone to talk to who you trust. Find an adult who can help with searching for a form of treatment.
Marijuana might be harmless to start, but over time, addiction can sink its roots into life. If you feel like you’re past the point of return, seeking professional help, including finding a teen drug rehab center, might be the way to cut those roots of addiction.