What Is Asthma And What Causes It
You know that asthma causes difficulty in breathing and that whistling, wheezing sound every time you inhale. But what exactly happens during an attack?
Heres an overview, and its not pretty.
To start, the airways in your lungs narrow and swell. In some cases, mucus may develop in your respiratory system as well. Some people may deal with it fine and deem it as a minor nuisance. For others, however, a worst-case scenario can often turn fatal.
The next logical question to ask would be, Am I at risk for asthma?Part of it is hereditary, and if you have close kin who are asthmatic, theres a good chance that you are, too. Another key marker, of course, would be if you happen to suffer from allergies, as theyâre often comorbid with asthma.
Then you should also note certain lifestyle factors like being overweight, chain-smoking cigarettes, as well as exposure to pollutants like second-hand cigarette smoke and other hazardous chemicals.
Now, what are the causes of asthma? Several external factors can trigger an attack, like airborne allergens, certain food additives, even the cold air. You also have medical conditions that are simple as the common cold, to something as complex as Gastroesophageal reflux disease where your stomach acids travel up to your throat.
Medications like beta-blockers, ibuprofen, and aspirin may also cause asthma. Along with that, experiencing stress and other strong negative emotions are known precursors to asthma attacks.
Does Smoking Weed Cause Asthma
If you are allergic to cannabis, exposure to it could cause you to develop asthma. In those who are not allergic, it does not appear that weed causes asthma. However, smoking weed could potentially aggravate symptoms and prompt asthma attacks. There are a few other respiratory conditions that have similar symptoms to asthma that are also worsened by exposure to marijuana smoke.
Q: Can smoking weed cause asthma?A:Unless you are allergic to cannabis, it does not appear that marijuana causes asthma. However, exposure to marijuana smoke does have the potential to exacerbate asthma symptoms, up to and including asthma attack, whether you are allergic to cannabis or not.
Best Cannabis Strains That May Help Asthma
Asthma is a common breathing disorder affecting more than 25 million Americans. Asthma sufferers may experience symptoms like coughing and wheezing, difficulty breathing, and even chest pain. This disorder can be diagnosed at any age in life and currently has no cure.
While traditional treatments like medications and lifestyle changes may help asthma sufferers, you might be surprised to learn that some patients have found success using cannabis. Thats because cannabis may act as abronchodilatorin some patients, allowing their airways to relax and open up.
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The Research On Cannabis Use In Asthma Patients
Exclusive bonus: that will show you the exact step-by-step process Dr. Dustin Sulak used to successfully treat more than 18,000 patients with cannabis.
Discovering the link between cannabis and asthma started back in 1975 with one small and very simple research.
A group of researchers led by Dr. Donald Tashkin artificially induced bronchial spasms in eight clinically stable asthma patients, focusing on the behavior of their airways.
In different sessions, spasms were induced through methacholine inhalation and by aerobic exercise.
Patients were then administered either placebo or actual cannabis with 2% of THC.
Placebo subjects recovered from bronchial spasms in 30 to 60 minutes, on average. Subjects who were given 2% THC cannabis were relieved from spasms almost immediately.
This was a revolutionary discovery at the time with all the stigma around cannabis and smoking with asthma.
In March 1985, a 20-year-long study was initiated and it concluded that moderate cannabis smokers who were diagnosed with asthma improved their lung function without suffering the lung damage, when compared to cigarette smokers.
With all these anecdotes circling around about cannabis stopping asthma attacks, it was obvious that the time had come to prove that cannabis is a bronchodilator.
Cannabinoids , activated CB1 receptors, which stopped the spasms and dilated the organs.
After years of research, one thing was getting ever more clear: THC was winning over CBD in this race.
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.
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Treat The Real Issues
All of our experts agree that if you have asthma, particularly if its severe or uncontrolled, then you should avoid smoking pot or using marijuana in any form.
If youre 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.
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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.
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Alternatives Methods To Smoking Marijuana That Help Asthma
Smoking marijuana may not be ideal for those suffering from asthma but that does not mean they cannot find symptom relief using other forms of medical cannabis. Inhaling cannabis smoke is not the only way a person has to use cannabis to get its benefits.
In Florida, there are a variety of state-approved products that are dispensed under other non-smoking routes. Those routes are:
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What Are The Asthma
Marijuana smoke is generally unfiltered. Smokers inhale marijuana more deeply than tobacco smoke. As a result, more tar ends up in the lungs.1 Marijuana smoke damages the lining of the airway and increases airway inflammation, which can trigger asthma symptoms.8
Compared with nonsmokers, marijuana smokers are more likely to have , cough on most days, phlegm, wheezing, and chest sounds.1 Their breathing symptoms are very similar to tobacco smokers.
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Is Smoking Weed With Asthma A Good Thing
You may have not heard of people using weed to treat their asthma symptoms, but the truth is that there is evidence that it actually works. While smoking cigarettes can make your asthma symptoms worse, smoking weed works differently. Many new studies have confirmed the benefits of using marijuana to treat asthma symptoms. With more research, it is possible to see weed emerge as a mainstream treatment option for chronic lung conditions.
How It Works
Cannabis has medicinal effects on your body and this actually offers a number of health benefits as well. Here are some reasons why smoking weed with asthma may actually be a good thing.
1. It has anti-inflammatory properties.
Studies show that cannabis has anti-inflammatory properties and it treats your asthma symptoms by reducing inflammation and opening the airway passages. This really helps reduce symptoms such as shortness of breath and coughing. Research shows that people who use marijuana on a moderate basis actually notice an improvement in their lung function. It is important to know that the effects of marijuana on your bronchial passages are completely different from the effects of tobacco cigarettes, which actually leads to constriction of the airway passages.
2. It has anti-spasmodic effects
3. It has antibiotic properties
Learn How To Vaporize Cannabis
Consumers that use cannabis for recreational purposesoften only have one objective in mind when they start vaporizing: to inhalesome vapour. And surely enough, this sole objective leads most people toacquire, over time, a satisfactory method of vaporizing.
When vaporizing for medical reasons, it is necessaryto inhale sufficient vapour without causing more irritation to the airways. Forinstance, a violent coughing fit can make an attack go from distressing tolife-threatening in a short amount of time.
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Dont Prioritise Your Desire To Medicate With Cannabis Over Your Life
We understand the thrill of finding a solution to amedical problem that is all-natural, non-invasive, and possibly, overall moreefficient. However, in the same way you should never solely rely on an inhalerto keep you healthy and safe, cannabis should not become your lifesaver. Keepyour inhalers handy. And if you are experiencing a critical asthma-relatedissue, dont try to talk yourself into good health. Try to gauge the situationobjectively, and if necessary, call a doctor.
Are you an asthma patient yourself? Mark, theinterviewee, and Jay, the interviewer, both are. Tell us about your personalexperiences with cannabis and asthma in the comments section below!
- Disclaimer:This article is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always consult with your doctor or other licensed medical professional. Do not delay seeking medical advice or disregard medical advice due to something you have read on this website.
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For Eczema Is There A Difference In Using Cbd Vs Products That Contain Thc Do They Work On Different Immune Issues What Sort Of Products Do You Recommend
Joanna Zeiger: There just isnt a lot known right now about how cannabis affects eczema. That is why we are doing the Allergy & Asthma Network PEACE survey to learn more!
It would be beneficial to speak to a doctor who specializes in cannabis to help direct you to products that could potentially help you without causing adverse effects.
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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.
Can Marijuana Help Asthma
THC can suppress the immune system. Asthma is an allergic reaction that your lungs have, the immune system overreacts to something in the environment, and that is the reason for the asthma attack. In this instance, THC can aid in calming the immune system since it is an anti-inflammatory.
But the main method of consuming marijuana is smoking it. And for those with asthma that choose to smoke despite their condition, there are likely to be more complications. So, if cannabis can help with calming the immune system, but smoking it causes complications, how can one with asthma benefit from marijuana?
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What Are The Symptoms Of Asthma
There are various asthma symptoms including:
- Frequent coughing spells which may happen when laughing or exercising.
- Less energy during activities or having to pause to catch your breath.
- Tightening or pain in your chest.
- A feeling of weakness or tiredness.
There are numerous ways that asthma is triggered. Due to sensitive airways, contact with triggers cause symptoms to get worse. These triggers can include:
- Changes in temperature and/or humidity.
- Strong emotions such as laughing, crying or stress.
- Chest pressure, pain or tightness
Cannabis Has Analgesic Properties
Although pain is not necessarily considered to be aprimary symptom of an acute episode of asthma, studies have shown that up to 76% of patients experience chest pain duringan attack. Generally, asthma-related pain is characterized by a deep ache orsharp stabbing sensation that develops gradually over the first few hours ofthe attack, and slowly dissipates as the attack recedes.
While there are no studies that specifically investigate the ability of cannabis to treat asthma-related pain, several studies into the general effect of cannabis on asthma have noted subjective improvements in pain. The known bronchodilatory and analgesic effects of certain cannabinoids suggest that they could be useful in managing asthma-related pain. Cannabinoids can do this both by reducing pressure and constriction in the lungs, and by acting directly at the nociceptors themselves.
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Cannabis Is Both An Expectorant And Anti
The ability of cannabis to act as an expectorant is somewhatcontroversial. It has been used as such for thousands of years, and appears in the ancient pharmacopoeia of China and India, but modern research has beensparse and has thus far yielded only ambiguous results.
Countless people throughout the world report anexpectorant effect after smoking or vaporizing cannabis. If it were noted only in smokers of cannabis, it couldeasily be dismissed as a result of the irritation caused by smoke particles. Thefact that an effect is experienced even when inhaling vapour suggests that anactive substance in cannabis is causing it.
However, most existing research actually points to thepropensity of cannabis to cause production of mucus. For example, a studypublished in 2014 observed increased mucus secretions in habitual cannabissmokers, along with damage to the tissues of the airways. Thus, further research into theexpectorant and decongestant effects of cannabis could be advantageous.
These were the top four benefits of cannabis for asthmatics as far as medical research is concerned. Next up are five dos and donts when it comes to using cannabis as asthma patient. We spoke to one asthma patient, Mark, about his experience using cannabis with his medical condition.
Secondhand Marijuana Smoke Causes Asthma Symptoms In Child Allergic To Cannabis
After cannabis is removed from home, asthma symptoms improve.
SEATTLE Its well established that secondhand smoke from cigarettes is a risk to anyone who suffers from asthma. New research being presented at the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology Annual Scientific Meeting shows its possible for both children and adults with uncontrolled asthma to find their symptoms worsening due to cannabis allergy and exposure to marijuana smoke.
A 6-year-old boy suffering with severe asthma had family members who frequently smoked marijuana in the house, says allergist Bryce Hoffman, MD, ACAAI member and lead author of the study. Even though family members didnt smoke marijuana in the same room as the child, he was exposed to traces of smoke and plant material. 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.
In addition to the young boys allergies to cannabis, the study indicates his grandmother also had a history of hives after personal use of cannabis.
If your child has asthma that isnt well controlled, see an allergist. An allergist can set your child on the right track for the long term to handle their allergies or asthma.
Abstract Title: Cannabis allergy in a young child with severe asthma exposed to secondhand marijuana smoke Bryce Hoffman, MD, ACAAI member
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What Are The Different Ways People Can Consume Cannabis As A Medical Treatment
Joanna Zeiger: The most common: smoking, vaping, tinctures, oils, topicals and edibles. How you take cannabis can have a different impact. The amount of time until you feel effects of the cannabis can also differ depending on how you administer cannabis.
Smoking and vaping are not recommended for lung health due to reported adverse effects. Inhaling does lead to very fast onset of action, which may be beneficial for people who have severe acute pain but should be avoided in those with asthma.
Edibles take much longer to work up to 45-70 minutes but the lasting effects are much longer than inhalation and can last for hours. This is ideal to aid sleep.
Topicals work differently altogether and their effectiveness depends on the type of injury or pain you are trying to treat. Thats why defining your goal for cannabis use will help dictate your treatment options.
Choose The First Time You Experiment With Cannabis Wisely
Waiting until your asthma symptoms manifest to try tomedicate for the very first time is not recommended.
Instead, make sure to experiment in a peaceful, safecontext, and while you are not experiencing any major respiratory issue. Youneed to acquire sufficient knowledge about your body, and how it responds tovarious degrees of cannabis intake. This means that you should be ready tocounter any issue that could arise due to your lack of experience: possiblecoughing, inappropriate dosage, etc.
Once you have a clear understanding of how vaporizingcan affect your breathing, throat and mouth, you can ease into using it topalliate to symptoms such as short breath, wheezing, tightness in the chestarea, for recovering after a severe attack, and even to actually counter afull-blown asthma attack.
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Vaping Brings Toxins Too
There are so many differences among vaping devices, how theyâre being used, ingredients, and possible toxins in what you inhale. None of that is well-studied, Rizzo says. âAgain, more research is needed.â
âAll these vaping devices are superheating … like crack pipes,â Mannino notes. âNone of that is good for you.â
As for edibles, theyâre not smoked, so thereâs no proof theyâd harm the lungs. But thereâs also no proof that theyâre safe, Mannino says. One study found reasons for concern about the largely unchecked, growing edible cannabis product market. The variable or mixed strength of edibles has led to reports of mental distress, stomach and heart-related side effects, and a rise in ER visits.