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What Does Withdrawal from Marijuana Feel Like?

Marijuana withdrawal is not as easy to deal with as it may seem. While many people believe that marijuana withdrawal does not exist, or that its symptoms are not very severe or strong, it is true that marijuana withdrawal can be frustrating and cause other issues for a person who suddenly stops chronic abuse of the drug.

How Long Does Marijuana Withdrawal Last?

It is important to remember that, like all other drugs, dependence on marijuana can occur over a different amount of time for different types of people. The same is true for the course of marijuana withdrawal. Generally, it will last anywhere from a few days to a week or so. The NCBI discusses the withdrawal period for a female marijuana smoker in a controlled study. For her, “the abstinence syndrome began 10 hours after cessation of marijuana smoking and last[ed] 96 hours” or 4 days.

What Does Marijuana Withdrawal Feel Like?

Marijuana withdrawal will make a person feel very tense, irritable, and uncomfortable. Because the person is used to the calming and euphoric high that smoking marijuana gives them, the opposite effect will occur where restlessness, anxiety, and irritability seep in. It can be a rather uncomfortable time, psychologically as well as physically.

Someone who abused marijuana will also experience a drop in appetite. This is why it is important for a person who is withdrawing from marijuana to eat regularly, as weight may be lost during this time and the person can endanger their health if not careful.

Marijuana withdrawal feels irritating and uncomfortable. Those who experience it often have problems falling asleep and will feel very sad. Marijuana withdrawal can even cause “depressive symptoms,” according to the NCPIC. Someone who goes through marijuana withdrawal should be watched after for signs of depression.

Can Marijuana Withdrawal Be Compared to Another Type of Withdrawal?

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During withdrawal from marijuana you may feel uneasy and not like yourself. These feelings will pass!

Marijuana withdrawal, though it is not considered to be incredibly severe, is not easy to weather. Many users who go through marijuana withdrawal confirm that it feels similar to nicotine withdrawal. Nicotine withdrawal, according to, creates symptoms very similar to marijuana withdrawal including:

  • “Feeling down or sad”
  • Insomnia and trouble sleeping
  • Restlessness
  • Having problems concentrating and thinking clearly
  • “Feeling irritable, on edge, grouchy”

People who experience nicotine withdrawal after they stop smoking regular cigarettes also experience cravings that can last for a long time. But the symptoms of withdrawal usually last from “a few days to a couple of weeks,” similar to marijuana withdrawal.

Marijuana withdrawal can be more intense than people sometimes realize. While heavy, chronic users may begin to exhibit signs of depression, many users experience insomnia, anxiousness, and irritability. It can feel very uncomfortable and, sometimes, even “distressing enough for the person trying to stop smoking marijuana to start using again” (NCPIC). Marijuana is an addictive drug, and its withdrawal symptoms can make a person go back to it. Those who are going through marijuana withdrawal should receive as much support and help as possible, as it is not easy.