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LaGrange, GA Marijuana Abuse, and Treatment

LaGrange, a city in the state of Georgia, has a population of about 30,500 people based on the estimates by the U.S Census Bureau. Based on LaGrange Daily News article, “Troupe Co. Sheriff’s Office Arrest, Release Report for Period Ending Jan. 24”, there are many documented cases of crime and drug abuse. Notable among these include; marijuana trafficking, the possession of amphetamine, driving under the influence, and the possession of marijuana among others. The rate of unemployment in LaGrange, GA is at 4.80%, a little higher than the state of Georgia at 4.30%. The relatively higher rate of unemployment explains the trafficking, abuse, sale of drugs, and crime in the city.
Marijuana is classified as an illicit drug, and its use is not only widespread in Georgia but the United States as well with the percentages of marijuana abusers in the state equaling the national rate. Marijuana abused in LaGrange, GA comes from Jamaica and Colombia with the highest percentage coming from Mexico according to the National Drug Intelligence Center. Based on the NDIC, statistics from a survey conducted in the year 1999 on the state of Georgia reflected that 4.2% of the State residents abused marijuana. Nationally, the abuse of marijuana was at 4.7%, illustrating the prevalence of marijuana abuse problem in the state. The NDIC survey in the year 2003 indicated that 12.1% of marijuana abusers fall in the age of between 18-25 years.
Other drugs are abused in LaGrange as well and these include;

  • Cocaine
  • Alcohol
  • Ecstasy
  • Crystal 
  • Methamphetamine

Other than illicit drugs, prescription drugs are widely abused in LaGrange, GA. The symptoms of abuse of prescription drugs are mainly physical and mental, and they include sluggishness, drowsiness, and headaches. The abuse of prescription drugs has the harmful long term and short term health, psychological and health consequences. Some of the abused prescription drugs include;

  • Morphine
  • Xanax
  • Oxycodone
  • Valium
  • Lortab

Columbus, GA, is one of the cities near LaGrange and according to the news in the state, drug overdose resulted in fifteen deaths in the year 2017 alone. The number is anticipated to rise after the completion toxicology results, a reflection of the extent of drug use. In the city, Heroine, Fentanyl, Morphine, and Dilaudid are some of the commonly abused drugs. The situation of drug abuse in Columbus, GA according to a publication in the state is considered to be “chronic and critical.”


Marijuana contains delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, a substance that results in the alteration of the mind of a user. The use of marijuana mainly happens through smoking and delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol is absorbed into the blood where it is transported to the brain. In the brain, the drug results in the activation of critical receptors resulting in mood swings, memory impairment, sight alteration and poor thinking. According to estimates, 50% of all marijuana users become addicted to the drug. The determination of addiction to marijuana in LaGrange, GA is done based on various assessments. Assessment of marijuana addiction only happens upon the incentive of the addict, their family or relatives to take action to seek help and treatment.
Assessment of marijuana addiction in the city can be done through visitation to a doctor or qualified medical professional. A doctor is capable of conducting a urinalysis as well as saliva test. The two tests can help a doctor determine the delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol concentration in the body of a marijuana user. A neurological test is also conducted by doctors to assess marijuana concentration in the body. Users of marijuana, in the case of a neurological examination, show results of motor activity being depressed. These tests, combined with physical assessment and an evaluation of symptoms in a user, as well as physical and mental effects, enables a doctor to recommend the appropriate treatment option.
Self-assessment is another addiction screening method for marijuana users. The assessment is done online and involves the answering of a questionnaire that is relatively brief. The test is aimed at the evaluation of how dependent an individual is on marijuana. Some of the questions that are in the online test include;

  • Is the amount of marijuana you use more than your initial plan?
  • Have you regularly aimed at reducing your marijuana use
  • Has your goal of lowering marijuana use registered success?
  • Are your cravings for marijuana strong?
  • Has your life at home, at the place of work or school been impaired by the use of marijuana?
  • Do you waste time using or trying to access marijuana?
  • Have you used marijuana in situations where it put your life at risk?
  • Has your social life and relationships been affected negatively due to the use of marijuana?

Based on the answers an individual gives (Often YES/NO), an individual gets to be alerted to whether or not, they are marijuana addicts. The test as it is used in the context of marijuana addiction assessment in LaGrange is adopted from the criterion of diagnosis per the “Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. “ The questions in the test are to an extent similar to the ones asked by professionals in the assessment of marijuana addicts.
The assessment, through an online self-assessment or a doctor’s urinalysis, saliva, and neurological test, a proposal is made for choices to treat the addiction. The success of a marijuana addict to overcome the challenge is mainly based on the selection of the appropriate option for treatment. Failure to acquire proper treatment increases the likelihood of relapse by an addict.


There are activities that are undertaken before intake for marijuana addiction treatment. The identification of the rehabilitation institution is the first step, and this is based on cost, affordability as well as ease of access. Conducting an assessment of the programs in the different rehabilitation centers to determine the most appropriate also takes place pre-intake. The rehabilitation institution with the most appropriate programs based on the extent of addiction should be a top choice. The determination of whether the chosen rehabilitation institution has been approved by the state, city and federal authorities is a critical pre-intake activity. Ensuring that professionals in charge of the rehabilitation center selected constitutes a pre-intake activity for marijuana addicts. A thorough evaluation of the chosen rehab center is a critical pre-intake activity.


Intake in a rehab center for marijuana addicts for treatment requires that crucial aspects concerning the addict be analyzed critically. The following should be assessed and recorded during the intake of a marijuana addict;

  • Marijuana addiction level as well as needs of withdrawal.
  • Needs that are psychiatric and medical.
  • The environment where recovery is to take place.
  • The needs of the addict that are behavioral and emotional.
  • The possible barriers and resources needed.
  • The potential for relapse.
  • The readiness of the addict for treatment.

Intake also requires the filling in of a form providing critical details and information that is to facilitate appropriate decision making in the rehabilitation of a marijuana addict. Personal information including the name of the patient, their date of birth, age, state of origin, and gender is provided during intake. The strengths of the marijuana addict are also noted during intake, and these are expected to aid in the rehabilitation process. The medical history of the marijuana addict, including counseling that has been provided in the past, is collected during the intake of the marijuana addict. Information on the history of the family of a marijuana addict and legal issues is also provided during intake. The history of the marijuana addict concerning the use of other drugs and substances constitute vital information that is critical in decision making by the addiction treatment professionals.
The intake form could require the marijuana addict to provide information on their development as a child since it could influence their addiction problem. The concerns that the family of the addict has as well as the concerns of the addict could be requested. The reasons why the marijuana addict seeks treatment are asked for during intake.


The smoking of marijuana results in cannabinoids retention in the body and detox is done to eliminate them from the body. In the city of LaGrange, the flushing of the Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol is done through various methods in the treatment centers. These include;

  • Tea and cleansers – detoxification is done through the lowering of the levels of tetrahydrocannabinol by tea and cleansers. The lowering of the levels of THC is facilitated by the fact that the two are diuretics.
  • Regular exercise – it helps detox marijuana through burning fat, removing the tetrahydrocannabinol stored in the body and into the blood, and eventually sweating it out.
  • Drinking water – Marijuana detoxification is done through excessive water drinking, making the addict to urinate more and sweat more. During urination and sweat, an individual flushes tetrahydrocannabinol out of their system.
  • Proper diet – consuming a diet that is sugar-free and avoiding alcohol consumption is a vital part of marijuana detoxification. Vegetables, fruits as well as whole grains should be consumed more to enhance detoxification. The removal of the tetrahydrocannabinol from the body is accelerated through consumption of foods that have high concentrations of water and fiber.

Inpatient Treatment

Inpatient treatment for marijuana addiction mainly involves the provision of therapy that is intensive to the addict. Inpatient treatment in LaGrange ensures that the doctors and counselors supervise the addict at all time. The supervision is vital given that the withdrawal symptoms during detoxification and treatment can be intense. Inpatient treatment ensures that adequate medical personnel with proper expertise are available in cases of lethal withdrawal symptoms. Inpatient treatment for marijuana addicts is recommended since it ensures that the addict has limited access to the drug. During inpatient treatment, marijuana addicts are provided with emotional and the much crucial psychological support by professionals.
Marijuana therapy is done during inpatient treatment, and this is considered to be fundamental for marijuana addicts. Therapy plays a monumental role in enabling a treated addict to avoid and, have the skills and capability of coping with the triggers of marijuana use. It primarily ensures that a treated marijuana addict does not relapse through proper management of their lifestyle and equipment with skills of problem management.
Inpatient treatment for marijuana addicts involves the following;

  • Therapy at an individual level.
  • Supervision on a 24-hour basis.
  • Recreational therapy activities including yoga.
  • Group therapy sessions, covering a myriad of topics.
  • A regular review of the objectives of treatment.
  • The management of detoxification

Outpatient treatment

Before being admitted to any drug treatment or rehabilitation program in Smyrna there are a few steps you have to go through – one of which is the pre-intake process. This entails filling up a simple form.
You will also be handed out a slip that lists out the necessary documents and items that you will need through your program. Your eligibility as well as readiness for medication assisted treatment for drug abuse will also be assessed as a part of the pre-intake.

Pre-intake Phase

Outpatient treatment of marijuana addiction involves programs that can go for between a month and three months. The amount of time an addict takes in the outpatient treatment program depends on the speed of their recovery progress. Aspects of relapse, physical health, and more importantly, in the case of marijuana use, the mental health of the addict determine the recovery speed in outpatient treatment.
Outpatient treatment happens on a weekly basis on a set location where the following activities take place;

  • Therapy counseling on a one on one basis.
  • Counselling on proper nutrition for detoxification.
  • The ways of preventing relapse.
  • How to manage drug use in the case of disorders that 
  • co-occur due to marijuana abuse.
  • Recreational, therapeutic activities.
  • Sessions of the family as well as group therapy.

The marijuana addict in the outpatient treatment program requires high levels of dedication and discipline. The addict is responsible for ensuring adherence to the treatment schedules, and failure to abide by the plan is likely to fail in the treatment process.


Marijuana addiction treatment during the aftercare stage is critical for success and avoidance of relapse. Activities that are undertaken by recovering addicts include volunteering in social work and regular peer meetings. Aftercare facilitates the following;

  • Education and enlightenment concerning marijuana addiction.
  • Connection with resources in the community.
  • Introduction of a recovering addict to groups that create a sense of belonging.
  • Access to the strength that is emotional and psychological.

Aftercare also involves the provision of therapy on relapse prevention. Mostly, the recovering marijuana addict gets enlightened on their triggers for marijuana use and how to effectively manage them. Relapse prevention mainly begins during treatment, and it also forms a central part of aftercare in marijuana treatment.

Sober Living

Marijuana addicts can only live soberly by residing in homes that are stable and in residences where marijuana use is not common. The presence of rules that are stringent especially in family home settings prohibiting marijuana or substance use and abuse is critical for the sober living for treated marijuana addicts. Sober living also requires that the treated addict be screened on a regular basis. Active engagement in economic and home-based activities is vital for a sober life as well.


Outpatient addiction treatment programs typically take place in a clinic or rehab home, where therapeutic and educational group meetings are held every day. In most cases, addicts who complete an inpatient treatment are suggested to enroll for outpatient treatment five days a week and then gradually step down to 2-3 days a week as they progress.
Addicts are allowed to stay at home while attending their outpatient program, and many are encouraged to go back to school and even work part time.


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