Marijuana Withdrawal Psychosis

Learn the Risks and Realities and Get Support at Icarus in NM

The symptoms of psychosis can be scary for both the person experiencing them and those around them, especially if you don’t know what’s going on. Smoking cannabis can be associated with higher rates of psychotic disorders and symptoms, but what about marijuana withdrawal psychosis?

Although it is uncommon, there is the possibility of brief psychosis during marijuana withdrawal. Like other marijuana withdrawal symptoms, psychosis from cannabis cessation doesn’t last forever, and the treatment of cannabis withdrawal can help.

It’s essential to know the facts. Let’s go over the symptoms of psychosis, the risks and realities of marijuana withdrawal psychosis, and more common cannabis withdrawal symptoms first. Then, we’ll discuss treatment for withdrawal and cannabis use disorder, insurance coverage, and the signs of marijuana addiction.

Let’s Start With the Typical Symptoms of Psychosis

Symptoms of Marijuana Psychosis

Most of the time, psychotic symptoms are associated with mental health conditions like schizophrenia and related disorders. However, people in certain situations can experience temporary psychosis.

Psychotic symptoms from marijuana (or otherwise) can include but are not limited to the following:

  • Hallucinations
  • Incoherent speech
  • Delusions
  • Disorganized activity
  • Agitation or hostility
  • Restlessness

Most people do not realize that they’re experiencing psychosis and believe that hallucinations or delusions are real.

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The Risk of Psychotic Symptoms During Cannabis Detox

While it is possible to experience psychotic symptoms from cannabis detox, it is very rare that psychotic symptoms present as a result of cannabis withdrawal. Temporary use of psychological medicine (e.g., antipsychotic medications) can help if a person does experience psychosis from cannabis withdrawal.

While most people who stop using marijuana will not experience psychosis, psychotic symptoms are not permanent in those who do. Unless you already live with a disorder such as Bipolar I or schizophrenia and related disorders that come with psychotic symptoms, there’s no risk of ongoing psychosis from cannabis cessation.

Chronic marijuana users tend to start experiencing symptoms of withdrawal within 24-48 hours of their last time using the drug. Usually, cannabis withdrawal symptoms start to improve in about 4-7 days of abrupt cessation. Acute withdrawal generally ends in about three weeks.

A Review of Common Cannabis Withdrawal Symptoms

While developing psychosis as a result of withdrawal is uncommon, many people who regularly use cannabis and quit have withdrawal symptoms of some kind when they stop. In fact, about 47% of regular or chronic cannabis users experience withdrawals following cessation.

Thankfully, cannabis withdrawals aren’t life-threatening like withdrawals from alcohol and some other drugs. Some people who stop using marijuana crave the drug long-term, which is part of why psychological therapy can be essential after cannabis detox and treatment ends.

Other common symptoms people experience during marijuana withdrawal include but aren’t limited to the following:

  • Depressed mood
  • Disrupted sleep or dreams
  • Irritability, anger, or agitation
  • Stomach pain
  • Chills or sweating
  • Headaches
  • Muscle tension
  • Appetite loss
  • Anxiety

While there aren’t any medications designed to address cannabis withdrawal symptoms specifically, medications can be prescribed to address concerns like sleep, anxiety, or depression during the detox process.

How Treatment Helps With Cannabis Withdrawal Syndrome

Medical Detox for Cannabis Withdrawal

Treatment for substance use disorders like cannabis addiction usually starts with detox to help you through sympathetic autonomic hyperactivity and other early symptoms of withdrawal, which are the most severe. Continued treatment helps you stay sober from marijuana and other drugs, develop essential coping skills, and rebuild your life.

Some clients recovering from addiction will have specific needs, like help with legal problems. We have on-site case managers who can help. Icarus Behavioral Health is equipped to treat all levels of cannabis addiction, from mild to severe.

Before you start treatment with us, we’ll provide an intake assessment. During the intake assessment, we’ll go over your psychiatric history, medical history, current drug usage, and other factors that could play a role in your treatment.

Here’s a little bit about what to expect in detox for cannabis withdrawal and ongoing treatment at our facility.

Using a Detox Setting for Cannabis Withdrawal

Detox can help you get through cannabis withdrawal syndrome. In detox, you will have medical supervision, and qualified professionals will be available to provide medications that help you through the specific cannabis withdrawal symptoms you experience.

We offer inpatient and outpatient detox services. After detox, you can pursue ongoing treatment to address the underlying causes of cannabis, dependence, or addiction. Most clients only need to stay in detox for a week or less for cannabis withdrawal.

Although detox services can be important for people at the beginning of their recovery, they don’t address the underlying causes of cannabis abuse. Continued treatment is integral for optimal recovery outcomes and is associated with a higher likelihood of lasting sobriety.

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Getting Effective Treatment for a Cannabis Use Disorder

Icarus Behavioral Health has inpatient and outpatient treatment programs. No matter what program you’re in, you will have a personalized treatment plan at Icarus Behavioral Health.

Clients in our inpatient program live on-site and have a structured weekly schedule of group therapy, individual therapy, and other activities or services, like supportive recreation and medication management. Attending our inpatient program for cannabis addiction can be crucial for some clients because it provides 24/7 supervision in a drug and alcohol-free environment during initial recovery.

In inpatient treatment, you can build new patterns and get used to day-to-day life without cannabis and other drugs slowly. Inpatient care provides the most intensive therapy and overall support for clients with substance use disorders and mental health concerns. The length of your inpatient stay at Icarus Behavioral Health will depend on your individual needs. Many people choose to remain in standard inpatient treatment for 28-90 days.

Outpatient programs have other benefits and can be used as a follow-up to an inpatient stay or as an initial form of treatment. We offer three levels of outpatient care: Partial hospitalization, intensive outpatient, and standard outpatient. Depending on what type of outpatient program you’re in, you could be in treatment for 20+ hours per week or 1-2.

Our outpatient programs for cannabis addiction are best for clients who can remain free of drug use outside of their program’s treatment hours. Additionally, you can continue attending work or school while in an outpatient program, which can be necessary or ideal for suitable clients.

If you need to take time away from your job or education for inpatient treatment or a higher level of outpatient care, like partial hospitalization, our staff can help you make arrangements and communicate with supervisors.

Dual Diagnosis Treatment at Icarus Behavioral Health

People with mental health conditions are more likely to use marijuana compared to the rest of the population. In some cases, problematic cannabis use is a form of self-medication for concerns like anxiety, insomnia, schizophrenia, or a mood disorder like depression.

Addiction research shows that addressing concurrent mental illness leads to better treatment outcomes. If you have one or more co-occurring mental health conditions, dual diagnosis treatment at Icarus Behavioral Health can help.

Dual diagnosis treatment is available at all levels of care at Icarus Behavioral Health, including both our inpatient and outpatient rehab programs.

What to Expect in Treatment for Marijuana Abuse

Treatment for Marijuana Abuse

If you’re an incoming inpatient client, you will need to bring clothes and some other personal products from home. We’ll tell you what to bring and what to leave at home prior to your admissions date. Meals, room and board, and other amenities are all included in inpatient rehab costs.

Outpatient clients commute to treatment from home or sober living multiple times throughout the week, possibly moving down to one day per week by the time treatment is over.

Staff members at Icarus Behavioral Health have extensive experience treating conditions like cannabis addiction. All providers have unique specialties and qualifications, including the use of different therapeutic modalities.

Therapies and treatments used at Icarus Behavioral Health can include but aren’t limited to the following:

Our team members will help you create an aftercare plan prior to your graduation date. Your aftercare plan might include job and education planning, housing arrangements, continued therapy, medication management, or support groups.

The alumni program at Icarus is designed to provide support for any client who has attended an inpatient or outpatient program with us and can also help you in the aftercare stage.

Does Insurance Cover Cannabis Addiction Treatment?

Health insurance can help you pay for the cost of marijuana detox and treatment in one of our inpatient or outpatient programs. Icarus Behavioral Health accepts most forms of health insurance, as well as Western Sky and other forms of New Mexico Medicaid.

Call our admissions line today to verify your health insurance coverage for marijuana addiction treatment at Icarus and get proven options for support.

Ten Telltale Signs of Cannabis Addiction

Signs of Cannabis Addiction

Cannabis Use Disorder (CUD), the formal name for cannabis or marijuana addiction, is diagnosed based on criteria in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Knowing the signs of CUD can help you identify addiction in yourself or someone else. Often, realizing that cannabis causes problems in your life is the first step to getting help for marijuana addiction.

Signs of cannabis addiction can include but aren’t limited to the following:

  1. Trying but failing to stop cannabis use
  2. Using marijuana in higher amounts than intended
  3. Using marijuana in risky situations (e.g., before driving a car)
  4. Continuing to use cannabis even when it causes problems in your social life, at work, or at home
  5. Continuing to use cannabis even when it causes or worsens physical or mental health problems
  6. Increased tolerance (needing to use more marijuana than before to achieve desired effects)
  7. Spending a significant portion of time thinking about or using marijuana
  8. Experiencing marijuana withdrawal when you stop using marijuana
  9. Giving up or reducing important activities due to cannabis use
  10. Marijuana cravings when not under the influence

Cannabis addiction is very common. Some sources suggest that one in three cannabis users develop an addiction, whereas others say that 10% of cannabis users develop an addiction.

High-potency cannabis products and engaging in cannabis use at a young age can increase your risk of addiction.

Call Icarus for Help With Cannabis Withdrawal and Treatment

Cannabis Withdrawal Treatment at Icarus

Heavy cannabis use can severely affect your life, physical health, and mental health. Eventually, withdrawal symptoms end. Continued use of cannabis is far more dangerous for those with an addiction to the drug. Whether you do or do not experience psychosis, getting through the withdrawal process alone can be challenging. We’re here to help.

At Icarus Behavioral Health, we treat cannabis addiction and other substance use disorders, as well as clients with dual diagnoses and standalone mental health conditions. To find out more about how we can help you or someone you know through cannabis withdrawal and addiction, call our admissions line today.

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FAQs Regarding Marijuana and Psychosis

What is withdrawal psychosis?

Withdrawal psychosis is when someone experiences psychotic-like symptoms from withdrawals of cannabis or other substances. The American Psychiatric Association (APA) calls this substance-induced psychotic disorder.

During withdrawal psychosis, you might hear one or multiple unfamiliar voices, experience visual or other hallucinations, or have delusions. While other symptoms can occur, a person experiencing psychosis must have hallucinations or delusions.

Other symptoms of a brief psychotic episode from withdrawal may include but aren’t limited to uncharacteristic agitation or anger, paranoia, isolation from loved ones, depression, anxiety, and speaking in ways that don’t make sense to others.

What is cannabis-induced psychosis?

Sometimes, people experience psychosis from using marijuana. Cannabis-induced psychosis refers to psychotic symptoms caused by cannabis consumption rather than psychotic disorders.

High-potency cannabis products put you at the highest risk of psychosis from marijuana alone. Low-THC products are less likely to cause psychosis. Other factors, like gender, can play a role in your risk.

Is cannabis use linked to psychotic disorders?

Yes. While we don’t know every detail of the relationship between cannabis use and psychotic disorders like schizophrenia yet, cannabis users are more likely to have disorders like schizophrenia.

We also know that substance-induced psychosis is a risk factor for the development of schizophrenia and related disorders. According to a study published by the American Journal of Psychiatry in 2017, 32.3% of people who experience substance-induced psychosis overall develop bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, or a related disorder.

People with Bipolar I are more likely to experience a psychotic episode. For the diagnosis of Bipolar I to occur, a person must have gone through at least one manic episode. Hypomania, a lower level of mania, alternates with depression in those with Bipolar II but does not turn into full-blown mania.


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