Treat The Real Issues
All of our experts agree that if you have asthma, particularly if it’s severe or uncontrolled, then you should avoid smoking pot or using marijuana in any form.
If you’re considering smoking marijuana to help with a medical condition, like asthma or anxiety , you should instead get proper treatment for that condition specifically, Dr. Gerber says.
That may mean changing to a daily or different asthma medication and getting therapy and/or medication to control anxiety.
The bottom line is that no one wantslung damage, but because asthma already causes lung damage, people with asthma need to be even more careful with what they put in their lungs.
Medical Research On Marijuana For Asthma
Did you know that the ancient Egyptians used cannabis to treat various conditions, including possibly asthma? Legendary French writer, Marcel Proust used cannabis to manage his asthmatic symptoms so much so that he referred to his joints as anti-asthma cigarettes. In the 1920s, when it was still legal in many states, physicians often prescribed cannabis concoctions as a cough medication.
Then, prohibition kicked in and the tobacco industry swelled to an extraordinary level. Once the link between cigarettes and lung cancer was uncovered, all forms of smoking were labeled as extremely dangerous.
In the modern era, studies on the benefits of marijuana for asthma sufferers are virtually non-existent. We do know, however, that some molecular variations of THC can produce a bronchodilatory effect. Furthermore, it is worth mentioning that asthma is a chronic inflammatory disease, and cannabis is known for its anti-inflammatory effects.
Best Methods Of Marijuana Treatment To Use To Treat Asthma
Cannabis for asthma has the potential to ease many symptoms patients experience, regardless of which method they use. However, this doesnt mean all the methods of consumption are equal in efficiency. Furthermore, it doesnt mean theyre all entirely harmless either. Important things to consider when deciding on your method of marijuana treatment use for your asthma are:
- Potential for immediate relief
- Optimal safety
- Controllable efficiency and dosage
While smoking medical weed is still an option, it does depend on how severe your asthma is, since smoking could trigger an asthma attack or escalate one. Because of this, you may want to consider other methods of use.
For instance, you can consume edibles, also called medibles, for long-term asthma treatment since they have certain variables, like the time they take to produce effects. They may not be appropriate for providing instant relief during an attack. A good option for emergency treatments could be vaporizing. Vaporizing releases cannabinoids in your body quickly while reducing any risk to your lungs.
To the healthy human body, smoking medical marijuana isnt harmful. But when suffering from asthma, you have to watch out for anything that can compromise your respiratory system.
Does Medical Marijuana Help Asthma
Marijuana contains THC, or the Tetrahydrocannabinol, which is one of many cannabinoids found thus far in cannabis. Numerous studies and even official sources agree almost universally that, to some extent, THC can help open up the airways in the lungs. Its important to remember that asthma is a disease in which those airways swell and narrow to the point of clogging, so this is the main connection between medical marijuana and asthma treatment.
But, on the other hand, marijuana is a psychoactive drug precisely because of the THC contained within, which is a psychoactive component. And, although smoking is the most popular way of consummation, it is proven to cause irritation in the airways and other breathing problems.
Thus, most of the online sources suggest that medical marijuana for asthma is best taken by other methods, which include vaporizing, as an extract, or even within the food. However, this leaves the other side effects of consuming drugs, and THC has many. Those side effects are divided into physical and mental.
Physical effects of cannabis include:
- Impaired body movement
Mental effects of cannabis include:
- An altered state of mind
- Loss of sense of time
- Impaired short-term memory
- Impaired concentration
However, all these are under the assumption of low to medium usage. At high doses and/or with prolonged consummation, cannabis can cause severe mental disorders, like hallucinations, paranoia, panic, anxiety, ides of reference, and even psychosis.
Medical Marijuana For Asthma Helps Ditch The Steroids
Cannabis Strains for Asthma
You might be surprised to hear that cannabis can treat asthma, but science tells us otherwise. History too historians discovered that Egyptians used cannabis to treat many conditions including asthma as far back as 1213BC! Even famous writer Marcel Proust wrote about his use of cannabis for the treatment of asthma.
Asthma has taken the lives of over 3,000 people in 2010. The shortness of breath, coughing, and chest tightness experienced by those who live with asthma can reduce the quality of ones life. But while many patients prefer not to use cannabis because they are afraid that it may make symptoms worse, the good news is that its actually been proven to help.
Asthma is a chronic inflammatory disease, and cannabis is a powerful anti-inflammatory. Other ways that cannabis helps reduce the symptoms of asthma include:
- Cannabis reduces bronchospasms, which is when muscles in the lungs suddenly constrict causing difficulty breathing.
- Cannabis provides relief from asthma-related pain. More than 75% of asthma patients experience chest pain during an asthma attack, and in some cases it can be so severe and debilitating. The pain is caused by the inability to breathe properly because airflow is interrupted.
Top 5 Strains For Asthma
What are your favorite strains to help alleviate asthma?
Potential Risks Of Marijuana For Asthma
Despite any possible benefits, marijuana also poses enormous risks if you have asthma. This is particularly the case if you smoke it. Smoking any substance can increase inflammation in your lungs. This makes asthma symptoms worse.
When you smoke marijuana, large air sacs called bullae may start to develop in your lungs. These can eventually disrupt your breathing. According to the American Thoracic Society, youre at an increased risk of developing bullae from smoking marijuana if youre under the age of 45.
Over time, bullae can grow and cause shortness of breath. Whats even more dangerous is the development of pneumothorax. This is a life-threatening condition that occurs when bullae rupture in the lungs.
In the short term, smoking marijuana can cause:
- frequent coughing
Indica Vs Sativa Vs Hybrid
If youve spoken to your doctor, and theyve approved the use of marijuana to treat your insomnia, its time to choose a strain.
Think of choosing a strain like choosing a tea blend. You could go for straight white or black tea, or a hybrid. Here are the three most common kinds of strains youll encounter:
- Indica. This type of strain is considered soothing and relaxing.
- Sativa. Generally, sativa strains make people feel excited, happy, and energized.
- Hybrids. A combination of both indica and sativa, hybrids are blends that are often left up to the manufacturer or dispensary.
You can always ask people at a dispensary to recommend a strain for you or to help you find what youre looking for.
Dr. Jordan Tishler, a Harvard-trained physician and cannabis therapeutics specialist, recommends a strain with less than 20 percent THC. Anything more than that, he says, will make dosing difficult. Too much THC might make you feel groggy and sleepy the next morning.
Different strains will also have different amounts of cannabinoids in them, but when it comes to getting sleep, both Roman and Tishler recommend an indica strain to induce sleep.
Medical Marijuana For Arthritis
Arthritis is one of the leading causes of disability in the United States. It is a condition that leaves the patient in chronic pain, stiffness, and sometimes unable to work.
Since it is a chronic condition, people who have it must seek ways to manage their pain to improve their quality of life.
Some of them endeavor to manage the condition by using medical marijuana, which is widely gaining acceptance as a new way of managing chronic conditions. CBD and THC help in the management of arthritis in different ways.
Marijuana And Asthma Attacks
Marijuana and asthma attacks combined would pose an even greater danger to an asthma patient than just the usual attacks. For this reason, medical marijuana is usually a synthetic strain of the plant, much less potent than in its natural forms.
This is the common mistake most people make when talking about the subject because they assume that using marijuana for medical purposes means allowing its use for the general public and legalizing what is currently considered its abuse. However, the countries that have legalized it strictly for medical purposes have regulated this under strict laws.
Currently, using marijuana in medicinal purposes is allowed in Canada, Netherlands, Belgium, Australia, and some U.S. states. The distribution is regulated by state law, and usage requires a doctors prescription.
Medical marijuana cards are also issued by the state as identification cards to patients that have received doctors recommendation to use marijuana in medicinal purposes. These may extend to allow the patient to possess, obtain, and even cultivate the plant.
The Link Between Mental Health And Asthma
Around two to five of every 10 individuals who have asthma also struggle with depression. Since asthma is a difficult condition to manage, this is understandable. With asthma, you may feel anxious about engaging in physical activity, and this could mean missing work or school. But anxiety or depression can increase your risk for asthma.
One study with over 18,000 adults found that those who experienced severe depression, anxiety or stress in their childhood had a greater risk of having asthma. According to researchers, experiences like these could harm a childs immune and nervous systems, resulting in asthma later in their lives.
Since mental health problems like anxiety or depression can affect every aspect of your life and make it difficult for you to take care of yourself and manage your asthma effectively, they require attention.
Asthma And Smoking Cannabis
Smoking marijuana to treat the symptoms of asthma may sound counterintuitive at best, outrageous at worst, and for good reason.
For one, smoke, in general, is known as a major irritant on the throat and lungs because of its composition. Tobacco smoke is often linked to different lung diseases such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and chronic bronchitis. Therefore, its natural to think of marijuana smoke as another irritant of the respiratory system.
If youre a marijuana smoker and you suffer from asthma, you may have experienced exacerbation of the symptoms, which could lead to an asthma attack. In this case, you should definitely stop smoking marijuana.
However, this reaction isnt necessarily because the smoke came from weed, but because any type of smoke is full of irritants and allergens. Plus, when you smoke cannabis, the smoke is usually held longer in the lungs, which can lead to further irritation and inflammation.
That said, weed may actually have some potential benefits for asthma sufferers that dont include smoking cannabis. Cannabis is known for its analgesic properties, which can help with chest pain related to asthma. Additionally, one preclinical study has suggested that cannabis can improve bronchoconstriction and improve airflow, while another has looked into the bronchodilatory activity of different doses of cannabinoids.
Optimise Your Vaporizing Experience
Once you have found the vaporizer of your dreams, and you have mastered the vaporizing rhythm that suits you best, very little remains in your way. Yet, even the smallest things can become obstacles!
Avoid the most basic consequences vaporizing can have on your respiratory system by always having the necessary elements to counter them:
- Itchy/dry throat: always have a big bottle of water nearby and take sips regularly .
- Go easy on your lungs: start vaporizing at a lower temperature such as 180°C . Work your way up if needed, but do not exceed 220°C . A flow of air that is too warm is not recommended for your lungs.
- Inhalation of plant matter: ensure your vaporizers accessories include mesh filters to prevent bits from travelling to your lungs, especially if you suffer from hay fever, a common sister disease of asthma.
- Regarding hay fever: do not rub your eyes after you have handled cannabis flowers
- Keep your vaping equipment as clean as possible using alcohol and lint-free cloths
What Are The Traditional Remedies For Asthma
Unfortunately, asthma is a long-term condition, and at present, there is no permanent cure. When it comes to treatment, the goal is to control the condition which involves:
- Preventing chronic issues such as coughing fits.
- Reducing reliance on quick-relief medication.
- Enabling you to sleep through the night and maintaining your existing activity level.
- Preventing serious asthma attacks that require immediate medical attention.
Asthma management involves discovering your triggers and avoiding them. In terms of medication, patients may be prescribed a variety of inhaled medications.
Potential Benefits Of Marijuana For Asthma
A growing body of research is focusing on marijuanas effects on asthma and whether cannabis plants can offer some relief for the condition. The focus isnt so much on smoking marijuana joints, but rather on taking cannabinoids instead.
Cannabinoids are naturally occurring substances in marijuana plants. They are sometimes used to treat chronic pain and neurological conditions, such as arthritis and multiple sclerosis. This is due to their anti-inflammatory properties.
Since asthma is caused by a chronic inflammation of the lungs, researchers are trying to find out whether cannabinoids can have similar effects for this condition. Research is especially promising for people who have allergic asthma.
Cannabinoids may be available in the form of supplements. These substances may also be derived from smoking marijuana in nontraditional forms. A 2013 study in the journal Substance Abuse found that people who smoke marijuana using vaporizers gained more benefits from the plant with less lung-irritating smoke.
Still, there are some limits to these potential benefits. One study published in Current Opinion in Pulmonary Medicine contends that short-term medicinal uses of marijuana may not harm the lungs. This is compared to recreational or heavy smoking. However, its not clear just how much is safe or for exactly how long.
Cardia Study Suggests Improved Lung Functioning Among Mild Cannabis Users
A long-term study supported by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute looked at roughly 5,000 black and white males and females aged 18-30 over the span of 29 years. It was called the Coronary Artery Risk Development in Young Adults study, and involved testing the lung function of volunteers, beginning in 1985.
It was praised as a well-conducted study and included marijuana and tobacco cigarette smokers. The cannabis users smoked up to three times a month on average, while the tobacco users smoked an average of eight cigarettes a day.
The tobacco smokers showed an expected drop in lung function, but marijuana smoke appeared to have unexpectedly positive effects.
However, it is crucial to note that the improvement in lung function was NOT seen among heavy marijuana users. Those who smoked cannabis 20+ times a month, for example, showed FEV1 levels similar to those found in non-users.
Dr. Stefan Kertesz, one of the lead organizers of the study, suggested that typical amounts of marijuana use among Americans are occasional or low levels. From the standpoint of being a scientist, these data suggest that low and moderate range use of marijuana do not do long-term harm .
Is There A Safe Way To Use Cannabis If You Have Asthma Are There Benefits
There may be potential cannabis benefits for asthma when taking it in other ways than smoking or vaping. Alternative ways to use cannabis include:
- cannabis edibles
- cannabis tincture/oil
- cannabis topical products.
These routes of administration may be safer since they do not impact the lungs the same way inhaled routes do.
In addition, smoking cannabis or being exposed to secondhand cannabis smoke could cause an allergic reaction.
For some people with asthma, cannabis acts as an immediate bronchodilator. A bronchodilator relaxes the airways which can help breathing. But that doesnt make cannabis a long-term solution for asthma control, Zeiger says. Patients need to speak with their doctors about their cannabis use. They should work together with their doctor to decide on the route of administration that is safest for them.
In the PEACE survey, participants also cited their purpose for using cannabis. These included:
- medical reasons
- recreational use
- both medical and recreational use .
Survey participants reported improved sleep, less pain and decreased anxiety after using cannabis. But survey participants also reported increased symptoms after using cannabis:
- shortness of breath .
It appears that many asthma and allergy patients are using cannabis for a variety of reasons that may have nothing to do with their asthma, Zeiger says.
More About The Condition
Asthma is a long-term inflammatory disease that can cause shortness of breath, wheezing, coughing, chest tightness, bronchospasm and air flow restriction. Asthma attacks are more likely to happen at night, and may become worse after exercise. Some people may get several attacks a day or week. Allergies, environmental factors , and genetic factors are thought to cause asthma. Asthma can also be related to allergies/hayfever or chronic pulmonary obstructive disease. Asthma could be an autoimmune condition.
Over 3,500 people die from asthma attacks, or asthma-related causes in the US every year. There are approximately 19.2 million adults and 5.5 million children in the US who have asthma. Asthma is the primary diagnosis for 1.6 million emergency department visits. Asthma sufferers are more likely to contract pneumonia, or suffer other complications arising from cold or flu.
Asthma is usually treated by the use of reliever inhalers and preventer inhalers . These inhalers contain short- and long- lasting beta 2 agonists like albuterol and levalbuterol and/or steroids like fluticasone or budesonide . Leukotriene modifiers like montelukast , zafirlukast and zileuton help relieve asthma symptoms for up to 24 hours. Theophylline is a daily pill that helps keep the airways open by relaxing the muscles around the airways, but is rarely used nowadays. Allergy injections like Omaliizumab may also be used.
Problems With Conventional Treatment
Asthma sufferers are often prescribed inhalers or puffers to treat their condition. These inhalers typically contain steroids.
Steroids act to reduce inflammation in the lungs as well as mucous production. Both of these actions reduce the likelihood of an asthma attack when exposed to triggers.
While these inhalers help many patients living with asthma, they arenât a perfect solution.
To start, they are slow to take effect, sometimes requiring several hours. Several hours is too long to wait during an asthma attack. This is why the inhalers must be used regularly as a preventative measure.
Inhaled steroids also carry side effects, such as voice hoarseness and thrush .
Systemic Steroidsâ Some patients also take steroids by mouth, known as systemic steroids. These can have even more severe side effects. Because they pass through the digestive system, they affect the whole body, not just the lungs.
Side effects include slowed growth, bone loss, upset stomach, weight gain, and mood changes.
Leukotriene Modifiersâ Asthma patients may also take a medication to target the compounds causing inflammation. These compounds, called leukotrienes, increase mucus production in lungs and tighten muscles surrounding the airways. âLeukotriene modifying medicationsâ reduce symptoms by targeting these compounds.
Leukotriene modifying medications also carry side effects. These include insomnia, headache, irritability, nausea and vomiting.
Cannabis Use And Its Impact On Asthma And Allergies
Allergy & Asthma Network and Joanna Zeiger, PhD, hosted a Twitter chat on June 11 on cannabis use and its impact on people with asthma, exercise-induced bronchospasm, allergies, eczema and urticaria. As part of the Allergy & Asthma Network Pain, Exercise and Cannabis Experience survey, Dr. Zeiger answered questions during the Twitter chat that are summarized here for you.
Dr. Zeiger is CEO and researcher with Canna Research Group, an organization seeking to better understand how people are using cannabis to manage medical conditions.Dr. Zeiger is also a former U.S. professional triathlete who was the 2008 Ironman 70.3 World Champion and competed at the 2000 Sydney Olympics where she placed 4th in triathlon. She is the author of The Champion Mindset An Athletes Guide to Mental Toughness.
Customize Your Vaporizer With A Water Pipe
Many vaporizers, especially home vaporizers, have the necessary connections allowing them to be hooked to an additional device. Connect a water pipe to your vaporizer, and vaporize through the warm water. This will help you inhale when your lungs are already in a bad shape.
However, ensure that the water does not get too hot as it could have the opposite effect. If you feel like your lungs are filled with mucus, opt for a dry vaporizing session instead. Warm, dry air is good for the lungs.
So Why Do People With Respiratory Issues Use Weed
It may seem far-fetched to imagine a doctor telling their asthmatic patients to use weed, but thats exactly what Janice Knox does. She’s spent 32 years working as a board-certified anesthesiologist before she began studying the impact of cannabis on illness, and now, she incorporates cannabis into her consultations with patients at her familys American Cannabinoid Clinics in Oregon, where her husband and two daughters all physicians also practice.
Knox says endocannabinoid receptors called CB1 and CB2 work in the lungs to modulate immune responses to inflammation. People have been treating the symptoms of asthma for years, but in the case of cannabis in the lungs, its a CB1, CB2 receptor on those bronchioles, Knox tells Allure. And if we know its chronic inflammation, we know which part of the cannabis is going to work best on those receptors its going to be the THC and the CBD as an anti-inflammatory.
A Better Way For Asthma Sufferers To Use Marijuana
Based on the information above, it may seem as if there is some merit in using marijuana to help treat asthma. Still, it would be very unwise to light up a joint or take a hit from a bong if you have asthma. In fact, whether youre inhaling marijuana or tobacco, the resulting combustion is not good for your lungs asthmatic or otherwise.
Even second-hand smoke can set off an asthma attack, so it shouldnt be hard to understand why smoking for asthma is a bad idea. In some circles, vaporizers are marketed as being a safer and more convenient method of using cannabis. While it may be true that there is less irritation on the lungs , there is zero evidence suggesting that vaping marijuana for asthma is safe.
Edibles, on the other hand, could potentially be a suitable option . Edibles are metabolized in the digestive system and usually take at least 30 minutes to take effect. While users often enjoy longer and stronger highs from an edible, it can be more difficult to gauge how strong the effects are going to be.
Exploring the benefits
All in all, we reiterate the notion that smoking weed with asthma is a thoroughly bad idea. If you have asthma and want to consume cannabis, something like an oil extract or an edible may be a better idea. Still, it is important to remember that ALL cannabis use is done under your own discretion, and/or with the guidance of your medical marijuana doctor.
Qualifying Conditions For A Medical Marijuana Card In Florida
If you or a loved one is interested in the medicinal benefits of medical marijuana, All Natural MD Florida marijuana doctors can help. Give us a call or visit our contact us page to get the ball rolling today. We are Florida’s most trusted medical cannabis Doctor in the State of Florida. If you have been diagnosed with one or more of the following conditions listed or one that is comparable and listed under “other debilitating conditions”. You qualify, call us 250-6737.
- Tourette’s Syndrome
- We offer a Guaranteed Approval or our your money back! 250-6737. Most conditions qualify!
The cost is $199.00 for a full State maximum 210 day/7 month certification. Plus $100.00 for all 3 / 70 day orders for medication which is also the max allowed by the State. You’ll will also have to pay $75.00 to the Florida department of health for the medical card itself. We will get you registered and assist you with this process if need be.
Ready To Get Started On Your Medical Marijuana Card?
Don’t Hesitate To Call Us 250-6737
Ready To Get Started On Your Medical Marijuana Card?
Don’t Hesitate To Call Us 250-6737
All Natural MD – 100% Guaranteed Approval – Call Us Today! 250-6737
All Natural MD – 100% Guaranteed Approval – Call Us Today! 250-6737