The definition of addiction is “A compulsive physiological and psychological need for a habit-forming substance”. It is possible to develop a psychological addiction to most things that are taken to excess, however cannabis is not physically addictive, although it is accepted that in some cases a psychological
Dependence can occur in heavy to chronic users. Among marijuana users it is relatively rare, although few users develop dependence, some do.
According to the National Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Medicines 1999 report, Marijuana and Medicine: Assessing the Science Base: “Compared to most other drugs dependence among marijuana users is relatively rare, although few marijuana users develop dependence, some do.
But they appear to be less likely to do so than users of other drugs (including alcohol and nicotine), and marijuana dependence appears to be less severe than dependence on other drugs.” Even heavy cannabis users wont suffer withdrawal as is the case with alcohol, hard drugs and prescription medicines.
Chronic users who stop using cannabis report experiencing irritability, restlessness and find it difficult to sleep for at least a week after discontinuing use.