Last updated: 09/20/2018
Author: Addictions.com Medical Review
Reading Time: 3 minutes
Withdrawal from marijuana or cannabis can be difficult. The symptoms include cravings, “anxiety, feelings of misery, difficulty sleeping,” headache, and chills, which is why cannabis withdrawal can be so difficult to weather (NCBI). In addition, many individuals relapse because the symptoms are so intense. But there are ways to find relief for this syndrome without turning back to the drug.
If you have been struggling with your dependence on marijuana for a long time (several years or more), you may need to consider professional treatment. “Behavioral treatments, such as motivational enhancement therapy (MET), cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), and contingency management (CM), as well as family-based treatments” can be very beneficial to those with marijuana use disorders, especially because there are as yet no medications approved by the FDA to treat the condition.
Rehab centers are listed on our website by state if you hope to check into a clinic, either outpatient or inpatient-based, for your treatment needs. Often, individualized drug counseling can be helpful as well. Your doctor is also a good resource for helping you to find counseling of this type.
Marijuana Anonymous is a 12-step group that is modeled after the successful Alcoholics Anonymous program. Attending these meetings can also be extremely helpful in giving patients relief from their withdrawal symptoms. Even though it is not a professional treatment, discussing the complex troubles of cannabis withdrawal can actually make a person feel better and make it easier to stay away from the drug.
Support groups can be a wonderful resource of relief and guidance, especially if you are becoming tempted by cravings. You can easily find a meeting in an area near you, and the group often meets in accessible places like churches, recreation centers, and treatment clinics.
There may be certain medications your doctor can prescribe you or over-the-counter drugs they can suggest if you are struggling with the symptoms of cannabis withdrawal. For example, they may be able to recommend the best OTC painkiller for headaches or give you medication to treat insomnia. They may also be able to help you decide if you should attend professional treatment in order to find sufficient relief for your condition.
Talking to a Loved One
One of the best remedies for marijuana withdrawal is discussing your feelings with someone you know and trust. Anxiety, depression, and irritability can all affect an individual going through this process, and it can often be too much to bear alone. Discussing your feelings with someone close to you will make you feel less isolated and allow you to receive the kind of positive reinforcement you so desperately need during this time. According to SAMHSA, “Having relationships and social networks that provide support, friendship, love, and hope” often makes all the difference during withdrawal and recovery.
According to the NCBI study, “Continued exploration of [pharmacological] compounds that target mood, sleep difficulty, craving, and appetite appears warranted given the reliable symptoms observed in withdrawal studies.” However, until a medication is made widely available to the public that can treat cannabis withdrawal, these are some of the best ways to find relief for the syndrome.