Scientists are continually trying new treatments for a variety of addictions. Many of these treatments involve using drugs to prevent or otherwise treat withdrawal symptoms and help you avoid relapse. Recently scientists started to test new drugs to help people who are addicted to marijuana.
Also known as Ambien, zolpidem is a hypnotic drug doctors use to treat insomnia, according to the National Library of Medicine’s Medline service. It produces a sedative effect on the body and brain. Using it to treat addiction to marijuana is an off label use but scientists see some promise in it overcoming the symptoms of withdrawal.
Zolpidem counteracts some of these psychological symptoms of marijuana addiction:
This solution is not an ideal one for long term use because zolpidem is addictive when used for long periods. It also has a potential for misuse if you take more than the prescribed amounts.
Buspirone, known under the brand name Buspar, is a long term antianxiety medication. Scientists are looking at this medication as a long term treatment for marijuana addiction. Buspirone is not a drug that you can become addicted to although stopping it suddenly might produce withdrawal.
Buspirone treats the anxiety associated with marijuana addiction. It could also serve as a replacement treatment for those using marijuana to self-medicate for anxiety or depression.
Gadapentin is another drug that is just now being studied for a variety of applications, including marijuana addiction. It is currently used to treat nerve pain, restless leg syndrome, and seizures.
There are several variations of gadapentin each has a slightly different formulation. Initial testing indicates that it also helps to relieve the symptoms of marijuana withdrawal. Unfortunately, it is possible to become dependent on gadapentin so it is a short term solution until more is known about it.
N-acetylcysteine is a vitamin that psychiatrists and scientists are only beginning to look at for psychological and addiction applications. Its most common application is to treat acetaminophen overdose but it also detoxifies the liver. In marijuana and other addictions, its ability to reduce toxins might help shorten withdrawal and keep an addict from returning to the drug.
Lithium is usually used to treat bi-polar disorder. It is a powerful mood stabilizer available for long term use. There is some indication that it will help with the long term issues associated with marijuana withdrawal. In recent trials with lithium, those who took it for marijuana addiction were less likely to test positive for marijuana use later on.
Using Drugs to Treat Marijuana Addiction
When looking for a drug treatment for marijuana addiction, it is important to take self-medication into account. Many of the mood stabilizers and other medications being tested could simply be treating an underlying mental illness that you’ve been using marijuana to treat.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, none of these drugs are approved to treat marijuana addiction. They are still in the testing phases. Until they are approved traditional treatments still work. To find a treatment center for marijuana addiction call 800-609-2774.