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A Psychologist's Thoughts on Clinical Practice, Behavior, and Life

Cannabis, Anxiety, and You

An October 26, 2023 article in The Wall Street Journal ("The Cannabis That People Are Using for Anxiety Is Probably Making It Worse") described the dangers of cannabis use despite its current widespread marketing as a benign treatment for anxiety and other ills. Living in a culture where rapid change is expected, it should not be surprising that many turn to the alleged benefits of drugs, legal and otherwise. This, despite historical awareness that the benefits of drugs tend to be vastly exaggerated and their side-effects downplayed.

Anxiety is a greatly treatable condition with drug-free psychotherapy since it is an identical normal healthy reaction to actual external and unconscious internal threats. Thus an adult whose parents discouraged feelings will feel threatened when experiencing love, and with the same pain as when a thug with murderous intent approaches. Similarly, Panic Disorder is the misinterpretation of normal anxiety symptoms with the same physiological reaction as the deadly medical danger it is believed to be.

The unconscious is very powerful and one must respect its power. Sadly, many psychiatrists and other medical practitioners have become mere pill-pushers rather than thoughtful assessors.

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