Rehab for Cannabis
Private Treatment Options in Thailand

As a potent psychoactive drug, cannabis can have dangerous effects on the human body. Its use is widespread, however, and many people remain unaware of its damaging qualities until they have already begun to slide toward addiction. Cannabis rehab in Thailand promises to help break your marijuana habit, by applying psychological therapy, holistic care, and other evidence-based treatment methods within a professional facility.

What is cannabis rehab?

Rehabilitation generally refers to a drug and/or alcohol recovery programme. Outpatient care is a viable option, but the term is more often associated with therapy in an inpatient setting. Cannabis rehab is usually an abstinence-based approach to recovery, and aims to provide an intensive rehabilitation care which is targeted at people who have difficulty living drug-free lives in the community.
Overcoming cannabis addiction is not just about quitting cold-turkey. You may need intensive care – including medical assistance – to get through your withdrawal symptoms and clear marijuana out of your system for good. Subsequent therapy sessions can help you overcome your struggles with cannabis, address any underlying causes, and win the internal battle for control.
For a recovery that stands the test of time, it is important to build a positive mindset, and develop the skills needed to fend off each new craving – while addressing any other addictions and mental health issues you may also have. By redirecting your inner and interpersonal life to a healthier equilibrium, rehab for cannabis addiction aims to prepare you for a drug-free lifestyle.

Is cannabis addictive?

According to the 2019 World Drug Report, cannabis continues to be the most commonly used illicit drug globally, and it is estimated that nearly 190 million people worldwide smoked cannabis in 2017. Cannabis contains the active chemical THC (delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol), and it is often called a harmless and ‘natural’ drug. Even though it’s not as physically addictive as drugs like heroin and meth, cannabis can be highly addictive due to its psychological impacts. Other names include marijuana, weed, pot, grass and ganja.
Cannabis causes an increase in dopamine, which is a neurotransmitter that controls your feelings of pleasure. Over time, this change in chemistry can increase your tolerance to cannabis – raising the amount you need to consume in order to gain the same effects.

At the same time, another significant change is occurring: Your body begins to depend on receiving those high doses of the drug again and again. At that point, if you stop using marijuana, you may start to develop a sense of irritation and craving – which then leads you back toward using cannabis again. This form of physical and psychological dependence may have you continuing to abuse marijuana, despite it no longer providing the desired effects. To make the situation worse, research shows that marijuana potency has increased in recent decades, making it even more of a potential danger for users.

Co-existing mental illness with cannabis addiction

Studies have shown a link between heavy cannabis use as a teenager and an increased risk of mental health problems later in life. Cannabis users have a high risk of developing long-term schizophrenia or experiencing psychotic episodes. More frequent use of the drug raises the likelihood of serious side effects; a recent study suggests that smoking high-potency marijuana on a daily basis may increase the chance of developing psychosis by nearly 500%. People who are already at high risk of developing a psychiatric disorder, whether for genetic or other reasons, are especially likely to suffer from a mental health issue after frequent marijuana use.
Many people will initially start using cannabis as a way of dealing with depression, low self-esteem, chronic pain or anxiety. Yet this type of coping strategy only distracts from the underlying problems, rather than addressing them. For this reason, it’s vital that you seek treatment at a marijuana rehab centre for any underlying mental health conditions, in order to treat the ‘bigger picture’ of your addiction.

In addition to treating cannabis addiction, rehab can also facilitate multiple mental health symptoms or addictions that often co-occur with cannabis abuse, such as:

Meditation by young women in white dress on a bridge by the sea.

Cannabis detox and withdrawal

There is no recognised medical detox for cannabis addiction. Withdrawal symptoms can vary greatly from user to user – with some people experiencing no side effects and others feeling physically ill. Withdrawal symptoms will depend on how much cannabis you consume, how regularly you consume it, and the type of cannabis you use. Psychiatric intervention is sometimes needed for people who are long-term, heavy users of the drug.
Withdrawal symptoms timeline:
  • Days 1-3: You are likely to feel restless and irritable
  • Days 4-7: Some people can experience cravings, chills, tremors and stomach pain during this phase
  • Days 7-14: The most common symptom during the second week is an inability to fall asleep, as well as feelings of depression and lower levels of concentration
  • Days 14-30: This period may bring coughing, anxiety and insomnia

At what point does someone need rehab for cannabis?

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorder-5 (DSM-5) outlines 11 factors used to diagnose a substance use disorder and its severity grade. If four or more of the following statements apply to you, it may be best to consider attending rehab for cannabis.

  • You are not afraid to consume cannabis in public at the risk of getting caught
  • You spend a lot of time seeking cannabis, getting high, and recovering from the effects
  • You cut back on work, school, hobbies, or other activities so that you have time to use
  • You have tried to stop using, but failed several times
  • You are unable to manage work, social, or family obligations
  • You have relationship issues with a significant other due to your chronic use
  • You have built up your cannabis tolerance over time, requiring higher doses in order to achieve the same “high”
  • You continue to use cannabis despite negative psychological, physical, and/or social impacts
  • You have intense cravings and unable to stop thinking about using
  • You have withdrawal symptoms when trying to cut down or stop using
  • You often end up using cannabis more frequently or in larger quantity than intended

Inpatient vs outpatient rehab

Rehab for cannabis addiction can come in the form of inpatient and/or outpatient treatment, both of which typically use evidence-based treatment methods at the core of their approach.

Inpatient cannabis rehab involves 24-hour care at a purpose-built residential facility, and can adequately treat those who suffer from more severe forms of cannabis addiction, as well as other addictions or mental health issues. By providing its own controlled environment and internal support system, inpatient rehab can also care for those who would otherwise receive inadequate support on the outside.
Outpatient care is primarily meant for those with no other mental health issues, a single and generally mild cannabis addiction, a positive and stress-free home environment with social support, and who have other pre-existing social, professional, or familial commitments that they need to attend to even as they work on their personal recovery effort.

Inpatient cannabis rehab

If you elect to enter inpatient rehab, you will live in a fully equipped professional facility that provides round-the-clock care. Generally, you will be expected to stay for at least a month – but perhaps even longer, depending on your condition. At the outset, you will be diagnosed and potentially assigned a period of detox with medical supervision.

Following this first stage, you will begin a treatment plan designed to address your specific needs. This plan involves regularly scheduled therapy sessions, and may include both individual and group counselling. Through such methods, delivered in a calm and isolated setting, inpatient cannabis rehab provides a sensible way for addicts to focus their full efforts on recovery.

Some upscale rehab centres provide treatment packages that add a dimension of recreation to the main recovery effort. These can include integrated games and group activities, as well as sports or field trips, as a way of maintaining their clients’ inner balance and motivation during their journey to recovery.

Outpatient cannabis rehab

Outpatient treatment involves regularly scheduled therapy sessions, without the residential component. As outpatient marijuana rehab centres do not provide round-the-clock supervision or care, they are primarily intended for those who can exercise enough self-discipline to manage their own cravings between sessions.

If detoxification is needed, the centre may refer you to a nearby medical clinic. Once your withdrawal symptoms have passed, a typical schedule involves up to 9 hours of counselling per week, depending on your individual needs. If more weekly sessions are desired, you can opt for an intensive treatment programme.

Outpatient rehab for cannabis addiction combines evidence-based therapy together with a flexible schedule that lets you handle your other obligations. By keeping any disruptions of your normal life to a minimum, outpatient therapy lets you spend more time with your family and social group, continue to fulfil your professional obligations, and keep up appearances – all while receiving effective treatment toward recovery.

What is marijuana rehab like?

Cannabis addiction treatment can take many different forms. An effective rehab for cannabis addiction will integrate some or all of the following modalities, as part of a comprehensive recovery plan to provide you with the best chance for long-lasting sobriety. A variety of effective treatment modalities may be available, including:*

Your rehab for cannabis addiction will begin with a comprehensive assessment that takes into account your mental health conditions, physical health, family history, other addictions such as alcohol, as well as any traumatic events that may have occurred in your past.

As a client at a marijuana rehab centre, you will be expected to abstain from cannabis use for the duration of your programme. Symptoms such as restlessness, depression and insomnia might be treated with prescription medications during the initial withdrawal phase, under the guidance of a medical professional.

Your treatment programme will involve one-on-one and group therapy sessions. Behavioural therapy such as CBT, DBT, contingency management, motivational enhancement therapy, along with a range of other intervention techniques, have shown effectiveness in treating marijuana use disorders.

Alternative therapy includes several other types of treatment which are intended to supplement or enhance the core rehab programme. For example, marijuana rehab centres may offer nutritional therapy, spa and massage therapy, or entertaining field trips to help you build social bonds and keep spirits up – all of which can contribute to your overall recovery.

Towards the end of your time in treatment, professional cannabis rehab will prepare a discharge programme that may include a relapse prevention plan, follow-up appointments, ongoing counselling, or community resources. This additional assistance helps ensure that you have the support you need when you return home.

*Treatment options vary from centre to centre

What happens after marijuana rehab?

Your treatment doesn’t need to end right when you complete a professional marijuana rehab programme. Additional post-treatment support is highly advised to ensure that your recovery continues as you return to your normal routine. You may need additional support to further develop your confidence and deal with challenging situations. Drug support groups and individual counselling can be a great help in this regard, as can outpatient programmes or sober living programmes.
01
Drug support groups

Joining drug support groups such as Marijuana Anonymous (MA) can be ideal to help with your continued recovery. MA implements the widely used 12-step model, which was popularised by Alcoholics Anonymous. In communities without MA meetings, other helpful groups such as Narcotics Anonymous (NA) may be more accessible. Participants in these meetings share their drug use and recovery experiences, provide useful tips and advice based on experience, and support others in their quest to overcome drug addiction.

02
Outpatient programmes​

Additional outpatient treatment may be worth pursuing even after your marijuana rehab is complete. Whereas groups such as MA and NA offer group support, many find individual counselling to be a better personal fit. Outpatient care is sometimes used as a “step down” from residential rehab to provide support as you transition back to your home life. Continued professional treatment allows you to refine the techniques you learned about previously, while also providing an opportunity to discuss any issues that remain challenging.

03
Sober living homes

As yet another post-treatment alternative, sober living programmes resemble a loose form of residential treatment – but without the regularly scheduled therapy sessions. In a sober living environment, you are free to come and go as you please, although there are certain rules in place that you must ultimately follow, such as hard curfews and attendance in group meetings. These programmes are ideal if you are still struggling to abstain from cannabis, and need a measure of supervision before returning to fully independent living out in society.

How long is rehab for cannabis?

The average rehab length for cannabis is a 30-day programme. If you are addicted to more than one substance (for example, if you use alcohol to self-medicate when cannabis is not available), it is advisable to spend a longer time in rehab. Programmes of 60 and 90 days are recommended if you have additional mental health conditions or have suffered traumatic events. Longer, integrated cannabis rehab programmes are proven to be more effective when it comes to preventing relapse when you return home.

How much does cannabis rehab cost?

Generally, the price tag for cannabis rehab programmes range from:
  • $4,000 – $7,000 for detox (7 days)
  • $3,000 – $7,000 for intensive outpatient programmes (7 days)
  • $10,000 – $30,000 for standard inpatient rehab (30 days)  
  • $40,000 – $100,000 for luxury inpatient rehab (30 days)

For many addicts, the cost of treatment plays a major factor when it comes to deciding where to attend rehab for cannabis addiction. While most people would prefer to recover in a nice setting, the cost of private rehab can prevent them from doing so. This is why many addicts look for rehab options overseas, particularly in Asian countries where private inpatient rehabs are more affordable.

Affordable marijuana rehab in Thailand

Thailand is home to several marijuana rehab centres, and may be a suitable choice for cost-effective rehabilitation care. As most rehab facilities in Western countries tend to cost a lot, joining one in Thailand allows you to cut back on expenses and appreciate the beauty of the country as part of a unique and memorable experience. Prices incurred for most Thailand-based facilities come to around $10,000 a month for an inpatient treatment programme.

A majority of rehab centres in Thailand have in-house professionals who received their training overseas. As many counsellors are recovering addicts themselves, they often have first-hand knowledge about the difficulties of maintaining sobriety. They are also extremely knowledgeable about all forms of drug addiction, and the problems they create surrounding mental and physical well-being. The majority are addiction experts from the UK, Canada, and Australia, providing exceptional therapeutic treatment to support a plan for lasting recovery.

resort at night in Thailand

Marijuana rehab in Thailand gives you access to

  • A variety of evidence-based therapies, including CBT, DBT, MBCT and mindfulness meditation
  • Both on and off-site support groups based on the 12-step method
  • Resort-style facilities and accommodation away from your home environment and negative influences
  • An ongoing aftercare programme featuring individual and group online counselling, relapse prevention plan, and follow-up schedule
  • A longer period of treatment for the same budget; staying in treatment for an extended period of time gives the best chance of success
  • A variety of rehab options – with beachside and mountain settings, private and shared accommodation, and a choice between budget and luxury rehab facilities
  • An extra layer of privacy and anonymity while dealing with deeply personal issues

Are you ready to take the first step towards life without cannabis? One of our clinical coordinators can discuss the best treatment options with you. Contact us to schedule a call.

Author
Cameron Brown
Psychologist
  1. “Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM–5).” American Psychiatric Association, www.psychiatry.org/psychiatrists/practice/dsm.
  2. NIDA. “Marijuana.” National Institute on Drug Abuse, 24 Dec. 2019, https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/research-reports/marijuana. Accessed 6 Feb. 2020.
  3. Vchangul. “World Drug Report 2019: 35 Million People Worldwide Suffer from Drug Use Disorders While Only 1 in 7 People Receive Treatment.” World Drug Report 2019: 35 Million People Worldwide Suffer from Drug Use Disorders While Only 1 in 7 People Receive Treatment, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, www.unodc.org/unodc/en/frontpage/2019/June/world-drug-report-2019_-35-million-people-worldwide-suffer-from-drug-use-disorders-while-only-1-in-7-people-receive-treatment.html.

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