Addiction Drug Use Marijuana 5 Signs of Marijuana (Weed) Addiction Yes, it is possible to develop an addiction to marijuana By Buddy T Buddy T Facebook Twitter Buddy T is an anonymous writer and founding member of the Online Al-Anon Outreach Committee with decades of experience writing about alcoholism. Learn about our editorial process Updated on February 15, 2023 Medically reviewed Verywell Mind articles are reviewed by board-certified physicians and mental healthcare professionals. Medical Reviewers confirm the content is thorough and accurate, reflecting the latest evidence-based research. Content is reviewed before publication and upon substantial updates. Learn more. by Steven Gans, MD Medically reviewed by Steven Gans, MD Steven Gans, MD is board-certified in psychiatry and is an active supervisor, teacher, and mentor at Massachusetts General Hospital. Learn about our Medical Review Board Print Kosamtu / Getty Images Table of Contents View All Table of Contents Signs Marijuana Addiction Risk Factors Effects of Marijuana Use An addiction to marijuana (weed) is not common, but it is possible. Approximately 1 in 10 people who use marijuana will develop cannabis use disorder. Some of the signs of marijuana addiction include: Strong cravingsA loss of interest in other activitiesWithdrawal symptomsIncreased tolerance for marijuanaContinued marijuana use despite negative consequences Is Marijuana Addictive? Signs of Marijuana Addiction Marijuana is one of the most widely used drugs in the United States, but it can have serious health consequences as well as other negative effects on a person's life. There are some signs to watch out for that suggest a person might be addicted to weed. Strong Cravings One of the major signs of cannabis use disorder, according to the DSM, is a strong craving to use marijuana. A person's urges might be so strong, for example, that they would sacrifice other commitments such as work or school in order to acquire and use marijuana. Loss of Interest in Activities Someone who is addicted to marijuana will prioritize their drug use over other aspects of their life. They will likely cut back on activities that previously brought them joy or withdraw from them altogether. A person with marijuana addiction may struggle to maintain healthy relationships with their friends and family if they withdraw from socializing in order to use the drug. In addition, marijuana dependence has been linked with a lack of motivation. Someone who is addicted may lack the drive to engage in activities, pursue goals, or keep up with responsibilities, including school and work. Withdrawal Symptoms If someone frequently uses marijuana and experiences withdrawal symptoms upon stopping the drug, they may be considered to have marijuana dependence. Marijuana withdrawal symptoms are typically mild, peak within the first week after quitting, and may last up to two weeks. Symptoms include: Irritability Trouble sleeping Decreased appetite Restlessness Marijuana Withdrawal Increased Tolerance According to the DSM, tolerance to a drug happens when, over time, a person isn't able to achieve the desired effects or "high" by using the same amount of the drug. They will need a larger amount of the drug to achieve these effects. A sign of marijuana addiction is increased tolerance. In other words, the more someone uses weed, the more they will need to use as their body becomes desensitized to it. Continued Use Despite Negative Consequences Someone with a weed addiction may realize that their drug use is affecting them physically, mentally, and emotionally. Studies have found that some of these consequences include: Impaired memory Impaired motor skills (increased risk of injury) Paranoia Higher risk of psychosis Cognitive impairment (lower IQ) Dropping out of school Inability to fulfill work commitments Financial instability Despite the negative influence their addiction has on their life, however, someone with cannabis use disorder will continue to use marijuana. Marijuana Addiction Risk Factors Risk factors that make young adults more likely to develop an addiction to marijuana include: Assigned male at birthUsing other substances like alcohol or tobaccoDysfunctional parent-child relationshipsHaving friends who use marijuanaPoor self-esteemThrill-seeking or impulsive behaviorMental health issues Marijuana for Medical Use May Result in Rapid Onset of Cannabis Use Disorder How Marijuana Use Affects the Brain and Body According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), marijuana use can have negative impacts on brain and body function: Loss of IQ points (these cannot be recovered even if someone stops using marijuana)Relationship issuesReduced school successSlower reaction time while driving or playing sportsDepression and anxietyPremature birth, stillbirthSuicidal ideation If you or a loved one are struggling with cannabis use disorder, contact the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) National Helpline at 1-800-662-4357 for information on support and treatment facilities in your area. For more mental health resources, see our National Helpline Database. A Word From Verywell While most people do not develop cannabis use disorder, it can happen. So, it's important to be especially aware of the signs of marijuana addiction. There are resources and treatment options available for those who are dealing with addiction. How to Stop Smoking Marijuana 8 Sources Verywell Mind uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Marijuana and Public Health: Addiction. SAMHSA. Know the risks of marijuana. Pacheco-Colón I, Limia JM, Gonzalez R. Nonacute effects of cannabis use on motivation and reward sensitivity in humans: A systematic review. Psychol Addict Behav. 2018;32(5):497-507. doi:10.1037/adb0000380 National Institute on Drug Abuse. Is marijuana addictive? National Institute on Drug Abuse. The science of drug use and addiction: the basics. Volkow ND, Baler RD, Compton WM, Weiss SR. Adverse health effects of marijuana use. The New England Journal of Medicine. 2014;370(23):2219-2227. doi:10.1056/NEJMra1402309 Brook JS, Lee JY, Finch SJ, Seltzer N, Brook DW. Adult work commitment, financial stability, and social environment as related to trajectories of marijuana use beginning in adolescence. Substance Abuse. 2013;34(3):298-305. doi: 10.1080/08897077.2013.775092 Dugas EN, Sylvestre M-P, Ewusi-Boisvert E, Chaiton M, Montreuil A, O’Loughlin J. Early Risk Factors for Daily Cannabis Use in Young Adults. The Canadian Journal of Psychiatry. 2019;64(5):329-337. Additional Reading Sherman BJ, McRae-Clark AL. Treatment of cannabis use disorder: Current science and future outlook. Pharmacotherapy. 2016;36(5):511-535. doi:10.1002/phar.1747 By Buddy T Buddy T is an anonymous writer and founding member of the Online Al-Anon Outreach Committee with decades of experience writing about alcoholism. See Our Editorial Process Meet Our Review Board Share Feedback Was this page helpful? Thanks for your feedback! What is your feedback? Other Helpful Report an Error Submit Get Treatment for Addiction Advertiser Disclosure × The offers that appear in this table are from partnerships from which Verywell Mind receives compensation.