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will my brain heal after weed?
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biggiesize posted:
hello all, 4 months ago I gave up marijuana cold turkey and have had no desire to ever go back.After a month of withdrawal hell,I could already tell a difference in my life.I was smoking a quarter bag a day every day.Now however after 4 months without it,My brain still has parts of it that feel dead.Its like those parts of my brain want to work and are trying to work but there is a blockage.Its hard to describe.Some days my vision is distorted. What i wondering is,does anybody know if my brain will continue to heal itself over a longer period of time or have I just simply fried it.It seems that the longer I go without it,i can see small improvements every few weeks.Will I ever be totally normal again?
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Taximan283 responded:
Hey There Biggie,

Well, I don't want to upset all the chronic Pot smokers we have here by what I say. I did that a couple of weeks ago. Did you go read the posts from 2 weeks ago about Pot? If you didn't, then please do. And make sure you read my responses.

So I'll admit that what I said was a worse case scenario. This is also what happened in my life. I was smoking Weed for 35+ years, and I mean every single night. If I missed smoking Pot 6 nights in a year that was a lot. The only times I went without Pot more than that was when I quit at 30 and didn't start again until 33. (starting again was the STUPIDEST thing I ever did) I also stopped for a few months in 1986 because of a certain GF I had, and I quit a few months in 1991 due to a DWI. But other than that I smoked every single night. I'm now clean from Pot for 6 years and 7 months. I was told by a top notch pdoc that my brain will never be totally normal again.

So what's more important than how long you've been without Pot is how long did you smoke it everyday? Unless you're talking about 20 to 30 years, then you will be OK again. What you're not realizing is that when you quit Pot you need at least 6 months before you'll start to feel normal. It really does take that long. I found the insomnia to be the worst thing. When I quit at 30, it took over 1 year before I could sleep normally again.

Another important thing you didn't say is your age. How long you smoked, and what your current age is become factors in how long it takes to feel normal again. Like with anything else, the younger you are, the quicker you'll feel better. It's common knowledge that younger people heal quicker than older folks do. So since you didn't say your age nor how long you smoked Pot daily, I'm not going to say you won't be ok again someday. Maybe you will be. I hope so, for your sake. But even if you won't be, don't go back to weed, because as you continue to smoke it the weed will continue to harm you.

But above all, remember that it takes a very long time to feel normal again after smoking weed a long time. 4 months is not very long. So don't worry yet. And unless you smoked everyday for well over 20 years, then give yourself more time, and you'll be ok.
 
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leavin_maryjane responded:
Hello, I would like to congratulate you on 4 months of going without pot. That is great. I am also trying to quit as well and have only smoked one time in the last 52 days. I know what you are going through.

I posted here on this message board and the Taximan also replied to me as well. He may actually be referring to my post which he is asking you to go back and read. I would have to agree with him on the duration of time and age as to whether or not there is any permanent damage. If you smoked a 1/4 bag of weed a day, thats smoking quite a bit. If you have smoked for many years, like fifteen or more years on an everyday basis, you may want to consult a doctor or addiction specialist of you have the means to. I was told by my doctor that no permanent damage can occur from smoking pot, however, I do have my doubts. There are a countless number of studies and research suggesting marijuana does not cause permanent brain damage and there are a countless number that suggests the contrary. You never know, but one thing I can say is you made the right decision in quitting. If you are able to notice small improvements over time, you are probably on the path to recovering. The brain does have a remarkable ability to heal itself, so if you have smoked as much as you say you have, give it time. Everyone has different metabolisms, so it may take up to six months before you feel better. I have read on other message boards on other sites about those who have quit smoking pot and they all say it is well,well,well, worth it in the long run.

One thing that caught my attention about your post is the comment you made about your vision being distorted. I believe I may know what you mean. My eyes seem to be very strained and I see a lot of floaters. I am having some headaches, anxiety and moodiness.

Good luck to you a keep posting. If you would like, please respond. I would have to say that your chances of returning to normal are high.
 
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Taximan283 responded:
Well let me say this. If Pot doesn't cause permanent brain damage, especially where memory is concerned, then I have a very bad feeling something else is wrong. And I hope not. But ever since I quit Pot my memory is getting worse. Like I said, Pot has this uncanny ability to mask the damage it's doing by relieving the symptoms of the damage. But once it gets completely out of you, the symptoms show up.

And btw, I never heard that the brain is so good at healing itself. The liver can heal itself, and so do most organs of the body. But the brain. As far as I know, anything that's part of the brain or nervous system is the worst parts of the body at healing itself. But I suppose someone will disagree with that too. All I can say is wait till all you folks are in your 50s.
 
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gazednconfused responded:
Yes. You will be normal again. But after all, what really is normal? Don't overanalyze your body looking for every little change/difference/or problem now that you have quit. The hard part is over, now just keep living the good life, you quit! you made it! I have done a lot of research on this topic and I have never heard of vision changes after being clean from weed for 4 months. It could be an unrelated problem, have you told your doctor? I mean, thats why he's there and thats why you pay for him. Good Luck -Calvin
 
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gazednconfused responded:
Taximan, this isn't an attack but I have to respectfully disagree with a lot of what you are saying. The brain is VERY good at healing itself, so much so that modern science can't explain it. I have two examples for you. Firstly coma patients that suddenly awaken. Secondly, stroke victims that loose control of one half of their body. In my case an elderly man i knew lost the left side of his body. That meant no swallow reflex, no shutting your left eye, no left arm, no left leg, and only half a smile when he could push one out. Doctors didn't know if he would ever get better. But in a few months, he could use his arm, leg, eye and mouth again, and his swallow reflex was improving. We asked the doctor, how he could improve so much and what was going on. It was quite amazing. His brain was forming new pathways to control those parts of the body, and how was his brain doing this? Science has no explanation. I also wanted to comment on your beliefs about marijuana. Yes, it is bad for addicts, too much of anything is bad. However, I see you said it has no medicinal values in another post. It seems to me you are applying only what you have experienced in your own life to others rather than stepping into their shoes. Consider the case of a dying cancer patient. Who is pumped full of toxic radiation, has lost all their hair and most of their life (as they once knew it). The feeling of nausea is 24/7 and the medication to aid these side effects isn't helping (I'm sure it helps sometimes, but not in the one case I witnessed). Medical marijuana was able to help calm the feeling of nausea and create a modest appetite (just as it does for bulimics and people with anorexia). How could you say it has no value?
 
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Tysolambo responded:
I'm now 22 I've smoked for 10 years daily now and am sure my brain is completely clogged from the fatcells THC created (Im also genetically skinny). I even felt it in my head when I smoked...Ive finally quit and was hoping someone could tell me how long till its clear. Ive read if u smoke once this fat stays with your brain for 2 days... does this meen I need 20 years to recover completely?! I hope not PLZ HELP
 
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Taximan283 responded:
Hey Tysolambo,

I really wish you had not dragged this post up again. However, it does prove that there is no general agreement on this topic. And I'm not going to start this whole debate again. I will never say that Weed is a harmless drug, because it's not. However, to suffer the kind of damage I was talking about you would need to smoke every day for at least 25 years. You didn't do that, and that's a good thing.

One thing I think we can all agree about is that a young person heals faster and better than an older person. That's a fact. So, keeping that fact in mind, along with the fact that you only smoked weed for 10 years, and not 35 years like I did, you have an excellent chance to heal. Just don't start smoking it again. I had stopped for 3 years when I was 30 to 33. If I had never started again, I probably would have been OK. But I started again, and I just could not stop again. So don't you do what I did, and you'll be OK. Give yourself 6 months to 2 years to get back to feeling normal. That means being able to sleep well again, and to get your emotions back under control. Be patient, and don't worry about it. If you do you'll start to imagine things. And then you may start again. So relax. You'll be fine.

(and Btw, Pot is not a narcotic. Just wanted you to know that. Narcotics are opiates. That means drugs that are derived from Opium, which comes from the Poppy plant. Pot is totally different plant. Just FYI)
 
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Tysolambo responded:
Thx Taximan and sry to bring it up again...if I asked the question its obvious to me to include that so I felt like it was a wasted question. Im aware that theres allot research still to go... we know so little about the brain... therefor I guess theres only opinions and theorys... I really value yours as you've smoked for so long...even tho everyones different. My biggest 2 problems are Im not a patient person and Im very smart... When I quit I lose that and I waited 300days without and coulding take it... instantly after I smoke I go off writting so I remeber the solution to what ever was on my mind... And it is always the smartest answer. And I know its not an illusion because its brilliant when I read it sober or present to others. Why am I so young and so wize... Another topic about simpler thinking (Like old ppl as brain cells die) beeing a wize view. Wizdom isn't even considered intellents according to most psychologists Anywayz THX AGAIN peace!
 
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Tysolambo responded:
Oh ya and I was thinking of neurotoxin not narcodic... see I cant think sober lol :S
 
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whydididoit responded:
okay, i've smoked 4 times. will there be anything wrong with my brain because of it?
 
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Nickasaur replied to Taximan283's response:
I've worried about this for months and months, ever since this occured. I started dating this girl who wanted me to smoke weed. I did it.....10 times? Between 10 and 15 times.
I'm 15. I was 14 then.
I will never drink or do drugs ever again.
Will my academics be affected?
I've never gotten less than an A and I need to follow the family tradition of going to Harvard.
 
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Taximan283 replied to Nickasaur's response:
Hi Nick,

At the age you are, and the small number of times you smoked Pot, there's little chance of permanent harm. I've been thinking about this and I only see 1 big chance you took. Well, 2 big chances. The 1st is that you like it so much that you continue to smoke it. As rare as you think that may be, it happens. The 2nd is that the Pot effects your motivation. This is something you don't hear too often these days. This was publicized more in the past. Pot certainly had a negative effect on my motivation. I can look back and see where it prevented me from doing many things I could have, and should have, done. With you, the danger is you slowly, but surely, loose whatever desire you have to go to Harvard. Especially, if the only reason for going is to follow a family tradition. That is exactly the kind of thing Pot can make you lose. You may have doubts about wanting to go. Continued Pot use will, most likely, bring those doubts to the surface of your mind, until you lose whatever motivation you now have. I'll tell you 1 reason I'm saying this. It sounds like you really wasn't too keen on smoking weed to begin with. But some girl made you change your mind. If you can be swayed that easily, you best beware. It's a well known fact that a girl (or woman) can lead a man to do something he didn't want to do. That has happened to some very famous men in history. And just to be fair I'll say that a man can also do this to a woman. My point to you is that Pot changes how a person thinks and feels, and not necessarily for the better. It's actually a well known fact that Pot can effect motivation. I was talking with a 22 year old young woman a while back. She told me she had quit smoking Pot, even though she enjoyed it. She told me the reason she quit was because it negatively effects her motivation to do things to better herself. I then didn't see her again for about 6 months. When I saw her 6 months later I asked her about Pot. She decided to keep smoking it, because it made her feel better about herself. She has the addiction disease (and back then I didn't understand this illness the way I do now). She did lose the motivation she was starting to get when she was clean. The Pot made her feel better for the moment, but it robbed her of her long range goals. This is the chance you took. If you continue to smoke it, my guess is by the time you're 17 or 18, you won't want to go to Harvard. Unless you have a strong desire to become something you need to go to Harvard for. But if you're only reason for going is family tradition, you can lose that. If you do lose it, and you don't go, then every time you get stoned you will feel guilty, but by continuing to smoke you will lessen the guilt. That's 1 thing I mean when I say Pot alleviates the symptoms of the harm it causes. Although I mean more than just this. Pot does insidious harm, and that's why it's worse than Heroin in some ways. Once a person becomes involved with Pot, they usually cannot see the harm it's doing to them. If they do see it, they usually rationalize it away. So I hope you stick to your decision to not smoke it anymore. Listen to me Nick. All drugs do harm, but not the same harm. Alcohol will slowly eat away at every system in the body. So it too does harm slowly. Something like Heroin or Crystal Meth does harm so quickly that most people quit fairly soon. Usually just several years of abusing 1 of those drugs can harm you so badly and quickly that an intelligent person will quit. And Coke or Crack will bankrupt you so quickly that unless you're very rich, you quit because you can no longer afford it. So no drug is safe or harmless. Remember this, especially as you get older, remember this. Many temptations will come in life. One measure of your wisdom is the number of them that you avoid.

Jack
 
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ChrisFromSCOTLAND replied to Taximan283's response:
This is for all the ganja smokers out thair if you abuse anything it mangles your head up for instance, I started smoking pot when i was 11 years old yea 11 thats how bad things are in glasgow lol anyway, I smoked all the way through school and by the time i was 15 me and my m8 were selling 3 bars a week and smoking the profit in a big way but eventually i realised the weed had turned my young brain in to mush. So I joined the brittish army at 16 and my sergant yelled at me all day evry day for bein a retard. It wasnt until i was 17 a i had became normalsh and i realised it was intense fitness and disipline that kicked my mush brain back into action so any body reading these posts about weed and the affects please dont beat your selfs up as i did all those years ago. Im now just turned 24 an finishing up college as a electrician to wich i used mary jane in the 1st year back at college and then kicked it again. The moral of the story is not to do drugs but just try them and also you can accomplish anything when you put your mind to it. THIS IS FOR ALL THE YANKS GO WATCH THE MOVIE TRAIN SPOTTING CHOOSE LIFE
 
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Caprice_WebMD_Staff replied to ChrisFromSCOTLAND's response:
Thanks Chris and welcome to WebMD!

(And I loved Trainspotting.)


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