Many people don’t believe that marijuana is a gateway drug. The truth is that any substance that releases dopamine and alters the mind can become addictive. Eventually, people develop a tolerance and begin looking for new ways to get high. The first thing to understand is why people turn to drugs in the first place and how the situation progresses.
Is Marijuana a Gateway Drug? Absolutely
In recent years, states around the country have battled to make marijuana legal. Some boast about the tremendous medical benefits. While there may be some benefits, they still don’t make the drug entirely safe. For instance, look at prescription narcotics. While they’re certainly helpful when used as prescribed, they’re also the leading cause of overdose deaths in the United States.
Aside from medicinal purposes, people turn to drugs for three primary reasons:
- To feel better
- Get rid of a feeling
Young men, in particular, are highly prone to trying marijuana, and they often use marijuana to fit in or deal with stress. The problem is that between 14–24, young men are still developing coping skills. When people begin abusing marijuana at a young age, they train the brain to need substances to deal with life’s issues. After a while, marijuana no longer produces the effects they’re looking for, meaning they may seek new substances.
How Marijuana Leads to Drug Relapse
When individuals seek and complete addiction treatment programs, perhaps marijuana wasn’t their primary problem. Maybe they abused alcohol or opioids and just smoked once in a while. They may tell themselves, “Well, I never had a problem with marijuana, so I don’t see why I should quit.”
Unfortunately, this an example of flawed thinking. In fact, millions of people have experienced a drug relapse in part because they started with marijuana and went back to their original problem substance.
The primary issue for men with an addiction is that they don’t know how to handle everyday life without using it. The goal of drug rehab is to discover how to manage life without mind-altering substances.
Substances that require an addiction treatment program can include the following:
- Alcohol addiction treatment program
- Opioid addiction treatment program
- Heroin addiction treatment program
If you believe marijuana was a gateway drug for you, reach out to a professional rehab center in California for help.
Getting Help Through Addiction Therapy
Located on serene California lakefront property, Serenity Lodge has helped many Men struggling with addiction embrace recovery. Through our comprehensive programs, we’ll teach you how to live a happy, healthy life without the need for substances. We won’t guarantee life will be perfect, but you’ll learn to manage life in a much better way.
Our addiction treatment programs include the following:
- Residential addiction treatment program
- Intensive outpatient treatment program
- Partial hospitalization treatment program
- Dual diagnosis treatment program
To learn more about marijuana as a gateway drug and how addiction treatment can help you, contact Serenity Lodge today at 855.932.4045. Our team is ready to help you begin the admissions process and begin your journey to recovery.