Fearing Schizophrenia After Smoking Marijuana

By Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW

Scary symptoms i need to know whats wrong with me i fear Schizophrenia…I smoked very strong Marijuana (hydro) at the start of the semester (2 months ago.) i had only smoked milder forms before that and not very much or often.

I apparently had way too much and the effects of it sent me into a SEVER panic attack – heart pounding, tachecardia, cold all over. i ended up treating myself for shock and begging my friend to take me to the hospital. Long story short he didnt, and i ended up going to sleep in my dorm after about an hour of constant panic from the effects.

The next two days after the weed and panic attack i felt constantly separated from the world around me like i was watching the world around me from inside of myself. i had paranoid thoughts that people werent real or that reality itself wasnt real. i had thoughts that the university i was at was actually a mental institution and i was creating this whole reality around me… I lost my appitite and didnt eat very much at all until the third day. i’ve had facial numbness and tingling on and off ever since. All of the symptoms seem to have lessened since the first few nights but are still present today. They happen almost daily.

ive also had paranoid thoughts when coincidences happen, like it scares me.

one of the scariest symptoms ive had was when i was sitting talking with a female friend of mine, a guy friend saw me and gave me a slight smile and instead of going to the logical reason that i was sitting and talking to a girl so he smiled thinking something was goin on my mind freaked out and thought HE KNOWS IM FALLING BACK INTO THE TRAP OF THIS REALITY, like i felt like he realized i was getting back to normal and he smiled about it… stupid and illogical but VERY SCARY.

my mind is constantly racing (and by constantly i mean like literally ALL DAY) with worry about whats wrong with me, im afraid im at the begining stages of schizophrenia… one of my biggest fears is losing my mind. i want to be normal. :(

what do you think is wrong with me??

(ps, im going to try and schedule an appointment with a psychologist at the campus health center next week.)

A. It is difficult to know what may be wrong. You may be experiencing dissociation, derealization and possibly delusions. They are signs that something is wrong. Though it could never be proven, it is a realistic possibility that your drug use caused your symptoms. Seeing a mental health professional is strongly advised.

After meeting with a mental health professional, he or she might have more insight into what may be wrong. Psychotropic medication might help to decrease the intensity of your symptoms. You may be referred to a psychiatrist for a medication evaluation.

While discussing this matter with the psychologist, you should explore the reasons why you are using drugs. People use drugs for a variety of reasons, including boredom, peer pressure or the most common, symptom relief. Drug use is always indicative of psychological ill health.

Illegal drug use also is dangerous. Marijuana is categorized by the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) as a hallucinogenic drug. A danger of drug use is that one can never be sure what they are using. There is no quality control or government testing. Your batch of marijuana could easily have been laced with any number of other drugs or poisons.

Your story is unfortunately common. I have received many letters from individuals who have smoked “something” and now are experiencing troublesome psychological symptoms.

I hope you are able to get the help that you desire. Making an appointment at the campus counseling center is a great place to start. Please take care.

Dr. Kristina Randle

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 8 Apr 2012

APA Reference
Randle, K. (2012). Fearing Schizophrenia After Smoking Marijuana. Psych Central. Retrieved on October 20, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2012/04/08/fearing-schizophrenia-after-smoking-marijuana/