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What Are “Marijuana Moon Rocks?”

marijuana leafThere are many different types and strains of marijuana, but marijuana moon rocks are not made from just one specific type. In fact, it comes from a combination of extremely potent cannabis known as Girl Scout Cookies, which is dipped in hash oil and sprinkled with what is known as kief. This means that the delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) chemical is extremely active, leaving you with an astounding high. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration states that moon rocks are a wide variety term that refers to a number of different synthetic cannabinoids. These substances are produced in laboratories and factories that are sprayed on plant materials and are often times smoked, making it a legal alternative to actual marijuana. All of which can be extremely potent and equally as dangerous to use.

THC: The Dangers

While there is a classic argument between different generations on whether or not marijuana-based products are dangerous, there is extensive research that indicates there are several risks that come about the use of these cannabinoids. In fact, there is scientific based knowledge from many different credible associations, such as the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) and the American Psychiatric Association that state that marijuana is addictive, despite what most people want to believe. Substance abuse affects people everywhere and scientists have developed certain criteria that have led them to the term cannabis use disorder, which is classified as a mental health disorder that forms as a result of excessive use of cannabis products. People who use marijuana that contains THC will typically experience a physical dependence that includes withdrawal symptoms and they will build up a tolerance, meaning they need to use more and more to reach the high they are needing.

Besides the obvious dependencies that people develop, it can even have an effect on the white matter in the brain. Studies suggest that individuals who began using cannabis products at a younger age are at risk of damaging the white matter in their central nervous system (brain and spinal cord). The white matter plays an important role in communicating between neurons. If the damage is done to the white matter, it can lead to the development of many different problems and neurological disorders, such as multiple sclerosis.

A study that was conducted found that teenagers who use marijuana products experience a lack of motivation and lower achievement levels as they reach adulthood versus those who did not use these products as teenagers. When using marijuana at a young age, it increases the likelihood of developing a number of different co-occurring disorders that include: problems with anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

There is also significant research that suggests that people who excessively use and abuse marijuana also have other substance use problems, specifically with tobacco and alcohol. The rates are also high when it comes to other substance use disorders in people who regularly use cannabis. This is why marijuana is considered to be a gateway drug or a drug that when used, allows the consumer to want to try other things to reach the same high.

Just like smoking tobacco products, using drugs, and drinking alcohol leave pregnant women at risk to develop problems with themselves and their babies, marijuana usage also leaves risks in pregnant women. Developmental issues and neurological disorders have been proven to happen in babies whose mom used cannabis during the pregnancy.

When smoking a cigarette, you are leaving your lungs exposed to different medical problems, such as emphysema. When smoking marijuana, you are also exposing yourself to develop something as painful, and life-threatening as this. While smoking tobacco products has shown to cause different things like lung cancer, there is no scientific knowledge that supports if smoking marijuana causes lung cancer.

Overdose is also associated with the excessive use of products containing high levels of THC, specifically associated with young people who use these.

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Why Synthetic Cannabinoids are Dangerous

One of the main reasons why using cannabinoids like marijuana moon rocks is dangerous is because there is no way of knowing the chemicals or the amount of them used in these products. There is no regulated supervision that goes into the production of synthetic cannabinoids like moon rocks and the chemicals that are used in them can be extremely harmful, if not deadly, to those who use them. According to the National Institute of Drug Abuse, people who use these synthetically modified cannabis experience psychotic breaks and with this, sever ramifications can occur. The effects on those who use these include: 

  • Abnormal heartbeat
  • Heart palpitations
  • Increased risks of developing heart problems like strokes or heart attacks
  • Extreme agitation
  • Hallucinations
  • Violence
  • Aggressive behavior
  • Paranoia
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Seizures
  • Physical dependence

This list of effects can cause permanent damage to the bodies of those consuming.

Developing Physical Dependence

marijuana leavesTo develop physical dependence, you must excessively use something where you will develop a tolerance and withdrawal to it. Agitation, moodiness, cravings, and physical issues are a few symptoms, according to the APA, that is associated with physical dependency with THC. Since these symptoms are often times brought up after the individual has stopped using moon rocks, this just encourages them to continue to use this cannabinoid to rid themselves of these symptoms. While most withdrawal symptoms from drugs are considered to be dangerous and life-threatening, the withdrawal symptoms from THC are not considered either of these. Although, withdrawal from THC can cause individuals to become anxious, depressed, agitated, and this can lead to issues with judgment making skills.

The physical dependence to synthetic cannabinoids is considered to be far worse than the physical dependence on regular cannabis, according to research. The symptoms will vary from user to user but can contain things like hallucinations, seizures, paranoia, etc.

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Moon Rocks: Is it Addictive?

Addiction to the potent moon rocks or synthetic cannabinoids is often times associated with the individual’s inability to control their excessive use of the substance. Just like those who drink or use tobacco products, those who use these substances often times will use them to deal with the problems of everyday life or to escape from reality. Those who use these substances will:

  • Use them to deal with issues they face in life.
  • Continue to use them despite the negative effects it has on any area of their life associated with their use.
  • Continually use more of the substance than they originally intended.
  • Spend large quantities of their time using moon rocks or synthetic cannabinoids or recovering from the use of these substances.
  • Have no self-control over stopping the use of these substances.
  • Have withdrawals or cravings to use moon rocks or cannabinoids.
  • Develop a tolerance.
  • Develop withdrawal symptoms.

Treatment: How to Stop Using Moon Rocks and Synthetic Cannabinoids

Treatment of any addiction or substance abuse problem is never easy. It involves dedication and even pain from detoxing the body of the harmful chemicals that have been added to it for so long. Treatment for moon rocks and cannabinoids, just like any other treatment process, is long and practice has to be continued long after the actual treatment has ended. Typically, the treatment for someone addicted to either one of these includes: 

  • An extended physical and mental evaluation to determine all areas of the case.
  • A personalized treatment plan specific to the needs of the individual based on the above physical and mental evaluation.
  • A withdrawal management program that will help the individual in dealing with any potential withdrawal symptoms without relapsing or any other problems occurring.
  • Medical treatments or medically assisted treatments that involve the use of medications or other procedures that deal with certain issues.
  • Substance abuse disorder therapy created to target issues that aided in the individual’s substances abuse, help the individual with coping and stress management skills, and a plan of relapse prevention that guides the way on how to avoid it and what to do if it happens.
  • A social support group such as friends or family that are carried along through the treatment process, involvement in volunteer groups, a twelve step program, or social activities that rebuild social development taken away from addiction.
  • Co-occurring treatment or therapy based on any co-occurring disorders found during the evaluation process.
  • Continued active participation in therapy, support groups, or treatment plans designed to help a former addict.

Those who continue to stay in the treatment process for a significant amount of time usually progress better and are more likely to avoid moon rocks or cannabinoids than those who do a short treatment plan. Initially, with any substance use disorder, there are higher success rates for those who are in treatment longer than those who are not. They also have lower relapse rates and success continuing the treatment process after it has ended. Typically, for the best results possible, those who have a substance use problem with marijuana moon rocks or synthetic cannabinoids are recommended to stay in the treatment process for as long as possible.

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