Did you know that marijuana can cause drug-induced psychoses?

I want to talk about the significantly under-publicized dangers of Marijuana use.

Did you know that if you have a predisposition to a condition like Bipolar Disorder you may never experience the severe symptoms of this disorder, but if you use marijuana it can trigger the onset of this illness or Schizophrenia which may then follow you for the rest of your life?

Did you know that if you are a chronic pot user you may be self-medicating a mental illness and actually aggravating the condition to potentially end up with a full blown psychosis?

Joints on schoolbook

It’s more common than people realize.

A 2012 article hosted by the Massachusetts Child Psychiatry Access Project (MCPAP) states: “One systematic review estimated a 40 percent increase in the risk of psychosis among adolescents who had tried cannabis and a 50 to 200 percent increase among more frequent, heavy users. Daily use of cannabis in high school is associated with a six-fold increase in depression and anxiety later in life.”

In my 15 years as a clinical psychologist I have been seeing more and more bright, young, talented people who were leading successful lives experiment with pot and end up having a psychotic break. They attend a music festival, a party or go on a marijuana binge on their own or with friends and the outcome is devastating. It is real and it is serious and the effects are not limited to children and adolescents. When someone has a psychotic break it takes a very long time to recover and in some instances they are never the same again.

If you know anyone who may be abusing marijuana and putting themselves at risk please let them know about these dangers and let them know there is help available to overcome addictions.

If you think it won’t happen to them or you then I’m here to tell you that the risk of triggering Bipolar Disorder, Schizophrenia, or a psychotic break. So ask yourself why you’re willing to take that chance.

Marijuana is NOT safe.