“…Science may one day accomplish this, but it hasn’t done so yet,” but that may be changing in regards to what some are calling a possible cure for marijuana addiction.
At least, that is what new research suggests. However, it is not that simple. Yes, new research has pointed to a naturally occurring drug in the body called kynurenic acid that inhibits THC’s ability to get people high. Yes, dopamine activity in key regions of the brain relating to addiction dropped. Yes, it also drove lab rats consuming marijuana for self-medicating purposes to consume up to 80% less when higher levels of this drug were in place. That, and when the drug wore off on the lab rats and monkeys, they resumed their normal THC dosing habits, strongly suggesting that the chemical was responsible for the change.
However, the way this would potentially act as a supposed cure for marijuana addiction is nothing new. There have been pills, shots, and a number of other medicines developed that keep addicts from getting high. For those it helps, that is a great thing, and we are not discounting that. However, it is a far cry from a cure for marijuana addiction.
Although there is less of a drive to pursue that chemical if it is less effective, for many addicts, it simply drives us to things we know will get us high and are a lot more dangerous. Many addicts sincerely mean it when they want to get clean and sober. It is not uncommon, though, for many to fall back into that thinking of “One more time,” “I changed my mind,” or “I will start tomorrow,” even moments later. If simply not getting high is all that is keeping a person from using drugs, then great! We have found it a lot more complicated than that, though, even if the addict does not recognize it at first.
It would be one thing if getting high was all that was dangerous about addiction, but it is not. No, by far the most dangerous part is the actual consumption of the drugs themselves. This treatment does nothing to curb the desire to get high, aside form targeting a specific chemical to be rendered ineffective. The high itself is not necessarily dangerous (although stupid and dangerous behavior when high certainly can be), but rather what the drug does to the body to cause that high to happen. As with over-the-counter or prescription drugs, there is always a side effect when taking a drug, and most of the time, they are not pleasant.
The other basic issue is that a cure for marijuana addiction must remove the disease itself. If continuous dosages are not being administered, the test subjects went right back to using as often as they had before hand. That also means any medication developed in a cure for marijuana addiction using this treatment would be right back where they were before they had taken the medication, and that forgetting to take a pill could send the person right back into their active addiction.
What do you think? Is it a step in the right direction, or are we chasing our tails? Let us know in the comments section!