We will cover the benefits of quitting marijuana if you choose to change your lifestyle, including how it affects your life insurance. The article will also touch on addiction and abuse if that’s your impetus.
Here’s the thing.
Regardless of how you choose to live your life, you deserve good health and respect. We’re providing this information so you can make the best choice for you.
We are not doctors and this article is not medical advice. If you need help quitting marijuana or any other substances, please contact your doctor or a resource such as Narcotics Anonymous.
Table of contents
THC is not an addictive substance, although you’ve probably seen terms like “habit forming” or “marijuana dependence.” It can exacerbate mental illness in some people. Yet others self-report that cannabis can make positive changes in their mental state, chronic pain, or help ease anxiety. We’re looking at recreational smoking for this article, not medical use. Your doctor can give you better, more personalized advice regarding medical cannabis.
In short, pulling foreign substances into your lungs is almost always damaging. But we’ll also look at what little we do know of the medical science behind smoking cannabis.
If you suspect you have a drug abuse struggle, keep in mind the benefits of quitting in the difficult moments, and please examine treatment options with your support network.
Benefits of Quitting Recreational Cannabis
While unfortunate, regular use of cannabis can impact overall health. The scientific community is still struggling to study the effects of cannabis due to legal problems at the federal level. However, the few studies we have show that young adults, in particular, can suffer from adverse effects of recreational use – beyond the legal repercussions.
Let’s dive in.
Better sleep. I had a friend tell me about their creative writing class in college. They were supposed to keep a dream journal for the semester as nuggets of inspiration. The professor, perhaps with too-good an understanding of creative writing students, told them that if they stopped smoking weed for a week or so, they’d start dreaming again and be able to complete the assignment.
Focus & short-term memory. Studies, unfortunately, show that repeated usage can temporarily wreak havoc on focus and memory. It’s pretty widely known with the stoner stereotype, but quitting can let you regain that focus. The good news is that focus can be trained, and many people struggle to relearn that skill regardless of what they do with their recreational time.
Lung health. Your lungs can repair themselves, albeit glacially slow. While cannabis is not tobacco in terms of respiratory problems, there are concerns about what exactly is in those vape cartridges.
Smoking cannabis, or anything, can lead to damaged airways, inflammation in the lungs, cell damage in the lungs, and some studies have linked pre-cancerous changes in lung tissue.
Mental Health. This is a tricky one. Lots of people self-medicate with cannabis, particularly for anxiety disorders. Some people believe that the whole paranoia-inducing thing stems from persecution during prohibition, scientists tell us it does produce feelings of paranoia.
On the other hand, it can exacerbate underlying psychological issues. This will really be a test on an individual basis. Give it a few weeks, and maybe the day will be a little brighter.
Weight loss. Not a direct cause, but cannabis does stimulate appetite (the munchies), which often leads to delicious snacking.
Reverse down regulation. Okay, what? This article in men’s health is the best-written thing on the internet about quitting marijuana. Grisel, the neuroscientist author, explains that:
In a nutshell, the chemicals-endocannabinoids-that trigger these receptors act as a sort of exclamation point on neural communication, indicating that whatever the message just transmitted across the synapse, it was important.Judith Grisel
Because we have cannabinoid receptors everywhere in the brain, constant triggering (smoking cannabis) makes the brain tone down the whole system. Without the THC (the active ingredient,) normal life fades into nondescript sepia. Down regulation especially applies to heavy marijuana users because the more the brain triggers those exclamation points, the more down regulation you will experience.
Easier to qualify for life insurance. While 12 life insurance companies don’t care about recreational cannabis consumption, most will auto-decline an applicant for either admitting use or discovering it on the life insurance drug test.
In 2013, Cannabis Withdrawal Syndrome was added to the American Psychiatric Association’s Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. The reference manual lists a bunch of symptoms of marijuana withdrawal, including:
- Difficulty sleeping
- Lowered appetite
- Depressed moods
It’s not deadly, but the withdrawal period can last several weeks. There are more references online on strategies depending on whether you want to ween off or go cold turkey.
Medical News Today reported that over 300,000 people start addiction treatment programs for marijuana use disorder each year.
If it’s negatively impacting your work, relationships, or your journey through life, then, by all means, quit. Family members and support groups can help. Talking to people about it and avoiding people who make you feel left out is a good start.
Professional help can come in handy too, particularly if you suspect your mental health is suffering. There are plenty of places in the United States that offer rehab services, and many therapists will help with substance use disorders without the need to check into a facility. The National Institute for Health can direct you to local resources for treatment options.
If you’re taking medical marijuana, always consult with your physician. They’ll have better strategies for you and alternative treatments for things like chronic pain.
About Marcan Life Insurance
We’re dedicated to helping recreational smokers and medical marijuana patients get life insurance without the frustration of a decline or steep premium penalty.
If you have any questions, give us a call at (888) 987-8447. Everything is 100% confidential.