Adults with ADD use marijuana to self medicate. They enjoy the calm feeling and the relief from anxiety, worry, depression that it provides. It can also act as a sleep aid. Many of my clients say that when they smoke marijuana it makes them feel ‘normal’.
However, while smoking marijuana gives the illusion of making you feel better, it actually makes your ADHD worse. It reduces your ability to learn, remember negativity affects your motivation and increases procrastination. It also makes you distracted and depressed. This is particularly bad news as it means you smoke more to block the pain out. Your sleep pattern is also negatively affected. Keeping a sleep schedule that is in line with the rest of the population is already challenging when you have ADHD. Smoking pot really throws the pattern off even further.
ADHD researcher, Rachel Gittleman-Klein, advises adults and children with ADD not to try Marijuana, Ever. It gives you such a sense of calmness while at the same time the ability to mentally fantasize. That combination is so irresistible to the ADHD brain you will want to keep on using it.
If you are already smoking marijuana and you are ready to change, there are ways to stop.
1) Visit your doctor and explain the situation and that you want to start treating your ADHD.
2) Start implementing the Untapped Brilliance Strategies, when you have ADHD your brain is low on dopamine; you can find unhealthy ways to increase your dopamine, or healthy ways, e.g. Omega 3, ADHD friendly diet, exercise and meditation.
3) Find a Marijuana support group in your area and attend.
4) Become a detective and pin point everything that smoking helped you with. Anxiety, worry, depression, etc. There are lots of ways to treat all of these without smoking. For example with depression, medication and counseling are both options.
5) Don’t beat yourself over, ‘wasted years’ the important thing is you are making changes now. Focus on ‘the now’ and the future.
6) Change your life. Making a decision to stop smoking marijuana is the first step. The next is to shake up your life. Having the same friends, doing the same things just minus smoking is very hard for you and won’t have such a high success rate, instead do things differently. Spend the time you would have spent smoking doing new activities. When you add things to your life not just taking things away, success becomes easier and less painful.