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Does Secondhand Marijuana Smoke Affect Asthma

It Can Make Your Asthma Harder To Control

Does Secondhand Smoke Trigger Asthma Symptoms?

People with asthma who used pot were more likely to need treatment at a hospital and more likely to need intensive care in the hospital, according to a study published in Respirology.

The researchers looked at admissions records from more than 400 patients with asthma and theorized that people who use marijuana are also less likely to stick to their asthma treatment plan, allowing their condition to get out of control.

What Are The Natural Compounds Found In Cannabis

  • THC tetrahydrocannabinol. THC is the compound in cannabis that is psychoactive and gives the high sensation. Its consumed by smoking and in oils, edibles, tinctures and capsules.
  • CBD cannabidiol. CBD is the cannabinoid that is associated with anti-inflammatory and immune modulating properties, and is not psychoactive, so it does not typically provide a high sensation. Its sold as gels, gummies, oils, supplements and extracts.

Dont Give Up On Your Pharmaceutical Treatment

It may be tempting to give up on pharmaceutical drugs altogether, especially when cannabis-induced results exceed expectations. However, existing anecdotal evidence, including this article, is not enough to guarantee safety in all possible asthma-related situations.

Asthma is by nature unpredictable, as it depends on literally hundreds of factors ranging from environmental ones to dietary habits, and even psychological states. Ironically enough, you could even experience a small panic attack following the realisation that your inhaler is not in your pocket, which could in turn trigger an asthma-related issue. Do not underestimate the multiple effects your prescription drugs can have on you, including the placebo effect.

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Current Methods Of Treating Asthma Patients

Anti-inflammatory drugs are the most popular treatment among people suffering from asthma. The steroids are inhaled through devices called inhalers, which are short-acting broncho-dilators. Broncho-dilators work to open your airway passages relieving shortness of breath, wheezing, cough and chest tightness caused by asthma.

Asthma affects an estimated 35 million people each year, claiming the lives of 4,000 Americans each year.

Some patients with more serious cases of asthma treat themselves with breathing-treatments. A nebulizer is an in-home machine that changes the medication from a liquid to a mist so that it can be more easily absorbed by the lungs when inhaled . These treatments may cause restlessness, headaches, nausea, and even more serious side effects such as seizures.

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Secondhand Smoke &  Asthma

These problems are only going to become more acute. While the proportion of adults who smoke cigarettes has declined from over 40 percent in the 1960s to 14 percent today, use of marijuana is on the rise: 14.6 percent of adults reported using marijuana in the past year, according to findings published in the Annals of Internal Medicine. The NIH reported the rate was only 9.5 percent in 2013. Significantly, the AIM study found a greater proportion of people 20 percent reported using marijuana in the past year if they lived in a state where recreational use was legal, compared to just 12 percent in states where it was completely illegal.

Right now, 33 states have legalized medical marijuana, and 10 of them have gone on to legalize recreational marijuana. At the same time, 266 cities and counties and 11 states prohibit smoking and vaping of recreational and medical marijuana in at least one of the following: non-hospitality workplaces, restaurants, bars or gambling facilities. But these comprehensive smoke-free protections are at risk, as marijuana proponents and lobbyists pressure states and cities to make exemptions for marijuana smoking.

Do we really want to go back to the era of smoke-filled restaurants and bars?

So, yes, we do mind if you smoke in public places. Individuals who choose to smoke or vape marijuana or tobacco products must remember that their decision to do so does not trump nonsmokers rights to breathe clean, smoke-free air.

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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.

Can Smoking Harm My Unborn Child

Smoking harms both the mother and her unborn child. Along with harming the mothers lungs directly, nicotine, the addictive substance in tobacco products, and other substances are carried through the bloodstream of the mother and goes directly to the baby.

Children of mothers who smoked during pregnancy are more likely to have respiratory problems and are ten times more likely to develop asthma. Smoking during pregnancy has also been linked with low-weight newborns, premature births and sudden infant death syndrome.

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Underlying Inflammation Is A Hallmark Of Asthma

For instance, they understand that asthmatics have some degree of underlying airway inflammation that makes their airways hypersensitive when exposed to asthma triggers, causing asthma attacks. They also know that asthma attacks are completely reversible with either time or treatment.2,3

The inflammation present in most asthmatics is eosinophilic inflammation, and this is very responsive to corticosteroids. This is why most asthmatics respond well to inhaled corticosteroids and are able to obtain ideal asthma control.2,3

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Customize Your Vaporizer With A Water Pipe

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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.

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How Is Smoking Related To Asthma

If you have asthma, an asthma attack can occur when something irritates your airways and triggers an attack. Your triggers might be different from other peoples triggers.3

Tobacco smoke is a common trigger for asthma. Tobacco smokeincluding secondhand smokeis unhealthy for everyone, especially people with asthma.3,6 Secondhand smoke is a mixture of gases and fine particles that includes:4,5

  • Smoke from burning tobacco products, such as cigarettes, cigars, or pipes
  • Smoke that has been exhaled by someone who smokes

Secondhand smoke contains more than 7,000 chemicals, including hundreds that are toxic and about 70 that can cause cancer.6

If you have asthma, its important that you avoid exposure to secondhand smoke.3

If you are among the 21% of U.S. adults who have asthma and smoke, get help to quit smoking talk to your doctor about treatments that can help you, or call . 7

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:

  • coughing
  • wheeze
  • 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.

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The Effects Of Secondhand Smoke On Asthma

Most researchers would tell you that secondhand smoke is detrimental to the health of anyone exposed. However, it can be especially harmful to those who suffer from respiratory illnesses like asthma. Asthma is a condition that affects the respiratory system. It is a tightening of the bronchi in the lungs that makes breathing difficult. It is often triggered or worsened by substances found in the air like pollen, dust, smoke, etc. The CDC states that as of 2019, 1 in 13 people have asthma.

Secondhand smoke is a persons exposure to someone elses cigarette smoke. Cigarettes are well known to contain many toxins and carcinogens . However, the smoke that escapes from cigarettes also contains those toxins and carcinogens. So, as smokers are exposing themselves to potential health problems, anyone around them is also being exposed to those risks.

According to the U.S Department of Health and Human Services, Since the 1964 Surgeon Generals Report, 2.5 million adults who were nonsmokers died because they breathed secondhand smoke.

What Is Cannabis Research Telling Us About The Potential Benefits And Risks Of Using Cannabis For People With Asthma And Allergies

Smoking Weed With Asthma: What Experts Need You to Know ...

Joanna Zeiger: Asthma is a disease with many causes, meaning not all patients with asthma react the same way to various triggers. For some people with asthma, cannabis is an immediate bronchodilator it relaxes the airways which can help breathing.

The drawbacks are that inhaled cannabis is an irritant and can cause increased cough, sputum and wheezing. So, risks far outweigh benefits and asthma specialists do not recommend inhaled or vaped cannabis for the treatment of asthma.

Cannabis can be used to decrease anxiety, but it can also be a drawback if it decreases the appropriate concern for managing asthma especially if that concern causes patients to stop taking prescribed medicines that control their asthma.

The take-home message is cannabis should not be inhaled or vaped by people with asthma. Other preparations may not have any specific beneficial effects on asthma or other allergic diseases.

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My Thoughts On Asthma And Smoking

I do know some people who have asthma who also smoke. One of my friends said she thought it was fine to do because she no longer has asthma. However, I humbly reminded her that its a myth that asthma goes away with age, and that, even though she displays no symptoms, she still has it. So, be warned, I said.

And I dont judge people. Thats not the point here. Its a free country, so Im not an advocate of laws forcing people to not do something they choose to do. A am, however, of the belief that education is important. Plus, I think Id feel guilty if my friend with asthma who smokes actually developed worsening asthma or COPD and I never said anything. So, I did. And I wont say anything further.

Okay, so, it has been known for years now that smoking can make your asthma worse. My doctor warned me not to do it. So, heres my humble reminder to all my fellow asthmatics not to smoke, and if you do smoke, and if youre interested, heres your incentive to quit. If youre a former smoker, I commend you for quitting.

Is It Safe For People With Asthma To Smoke Cannabis

Many people with asthma are smoking or vaping cannabis. This could be harmful to their lungs and airways, especially in adolescents.

In the PEACE survey, 53.4% of cannabis users with asthma smoked it, while 35.2% vaped cannabis. Further, about half of the cannabis smokers with asthma reported uncontrolled asthma symptoms.

It surprised me that over half of the cannabis users in the study who have asthma were smoking it, says Joanna Zeiger, PhD, principal investigator of the PEACE survey.

Its not recommended that people with asthma smoke or vape cannabis. Smoking or vaping cannabis can cause increased cough, wheezing and shortness of breath. It can increase risk of an asthma attack or asthma flare. In the PEACE survey, nearly one-third of those who smoked cannabis reported cough.

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It Can Damage The Blood Vessels In Your Lungs

Inhaling marijuana smoke, even secondhand, may damage the capillaries, the thinnest and smallest type of blood vessels, which supply oxygen to tissues throughout the body, including the lungs.

Rats who inhaled secondhand marijuana smoke for just one minute experienced significant constriction in their capillaries, according to a 2016 study published in the Journal of the American Heart Association.

It took the rats blood vessels longer to recover after each exposure. Over time, this could lead to permanent damageand thats just from secondhand smoke.

In humans with asthma, smoking weed could cause similar constriction and damage, triggering an attack and/or making an attack more severe.

How Vaping Triggers Asthma Symptoms

Asthma Made Me Smoke

Reasons why vaping triggers asthma symptoms include:

  • The main chemicals in e-cigarettes, such as propylene glycol and vegetable glycerine, have been linked to increased cough, mucus secretions, chest tightness and reduced lung function, all of which can make asthma worse.
  • Vaping can irritate the lungs airways, making asthma attacks more likely.
  • Research has linked some flavoured additives in e-cigarettes to causing cell damage in the airways which worsens asthma.
  • One comprehensive study of more than 19,000 e-cigarette users found common side effects included coughing and a dry throat, which could make asthma worse.
  • Vaping may help pneumonia-causing bacteria to stick to cells that line the airways, causing further damage to the lungs. People with asthma might be vulnerable to this.
  • Vaping might impair the lungs ability to fight infection, increasing the risk of more severe asthma attacks.

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Can Animals Get High From Secondhand Cannabis Smoke

The average person doesnt need to be concerned about getting high from a whiff of your secondhand cannabis smoke. The main reason for this is that people are much larger and heavier than household pets, so the small amount of active stuff in weed that floats around in secondhand smoke doesnt really make an impact. But its a different story with pets. The smaller size of your dog or cat makes them a lot more sensitive to cannabis, making it possible for them to get high if theres a lot of secondhand smoke wafting around.

You taking the occasional hit in their general vicinity shouldn’t get your pet high, but a hotbox surely will. And them getting high isnt the only potentially negative effect of secondhand smoke dogs and cats also have a much more sensitive respiratory system, and secondhand smoke can cause them serious breathing problems and irritation.

As a general rule, the smaller your pet, the bigger the risk of being harmed by secondhand smoke.

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Lung Health Institute Can Help You Find Alternative Copd Treatments

At Lung Health Institute, we know alternative treatments can help treat COPD and other chronic lung diseases. This is why our team has developed several alternative treatment options designed to benefit chronic lung disease patients. We offer 3 Anti-Inflammatory Initiative plans. These plans provide information about lung-healthy foods and recipes, exercising and helpful supplements. Using this program may help you boost your immune system naturally and may help train your body to use fats to fight inflammation. Another alternative treatment we offer is cellular therapy. Cellular therapy is a minimally invasive procedure that uses concentrated platelets and cells from your body to target lung disease. These platelets release healing properties that, when combined with proteins, growth factors and other helpful cells, may promote healing in damaged tissue and reduce inammation in your lungs.Take the next step to find relief. one of our patient coordinators today for more information or to schedule a free consultation.

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Secondhand Pot Smoke Can Harm An Asthmatic Child

THURSDAY, Nov. 29, 2018 — A 6-year-old boy with severe asthma wasn’t responding to the usual treatments. It was only when family members stopped smoking marijuana at home that his breathing got better, according to his doctor.

The boy’s case shows that exposure to secondhand pot smoke can worsen asthma in children who have a marijuana allergy, a new study reports.

The child’s relatives frequently smoked marijuana in the house, said Dr. Bryce Hoffman, lead author of the report.

“Even though family members didn’t smoke marijuana in the same room as the child, he was exposed to traces of smoke and plant material,” explained Hoffman, an allergy and immunology specialist in Denver.

“It was not clear why his asthma was so severe and not responding to aggressive asthma therapies until we determined he was allergic to cannabis. After the cannabis was removed from the house, his asthma improved,” Hoffman said in a news release from the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology .

The case study also said that the boy’s grandmother had a history of hives after personal use of marijuana.

“Although the boy didn’t have any clear allergic symptoms such as hives — like his grandmother — we know indoor allergens like pets and dust mites can make asthma worse without obvious allergic symptoms,” Hoffman said.

This type of trigger is different from secondhand tobacco smoke, which worsens asthma by irritating the lungs in a non-allergic way, he explained.

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