My Prescription doesn't kill

SIDE EFFECTS

POTENTIAL SIDE EFFECTS OF MEDICAL CANNABIS

Medical cannabis is a versatile medicine that can help with the side effects of countless medical conditions, including cancer, HIV/AIDs, multiple sclerosis, glaucoma and more. Like all medicines, medical cannabis may cause certain effects. However, cannabis side effects are much milder and more manageable than those that come with traditional medicines. And unlike thousands of other medicines, there has never been a death attributed to cannabis overdose.

Cannabis affects everyone differently, but some people may experience one or more of the following side effects:

Drowsiness
Dry Mouth or Thirst
Giddiness
Hunger
Insomnia
Red Eyes
Respiratory Issues
Short-Term Memory Loss
Uneasiness or Anxiety

Medical Cannabis Side Effect: Drowsiness

Some patients who medicate with cannabis will experience drowsiness. Also called hypnesthesia, drowsiness is a state of impaired awareness associated with a desire or inclination to sleep.  While this may interfere with some people’s ability to remain alter during work hours, patients who suffer from insomnia will find this side effect to be very effective in alleviating their condition.

How can I alleviate this side effect?

As with all medications that may cause drowsiness, do not drive, operate heavy machinery or drink alcohol while using medical cannabis. You may prefer to use medical cannabis in the evening or before you go to bed to avoid this side effect. Drowsiness is more common with indica strains, so you may want to try medicating with a more alert sativa strain instead.

Medical Cannabis Side Effect: Dry Mouth or Thirst

Excessive thirst and xerostomia, or dry mouth, are common medical cannabis side effects. Many pot smokers refer to this effect as “cotton mouth.” These side effects are very minor, will rarely if ever interfere with your day to day activities, and can be alleviated easily at home.

How do I alleviate this side effect?

If you experience dry mouth or thirst after medicating with cannabis, simply drink non-carbonated, sugarless fluids or use chewing gum with xylitol. If left alone, the symptoms generally disappear as the effects of the cannabis wear off.

Medical Cannabis Side Effect: Giddiness

Cannabis can often make patients feel euphoric and giddy, which may result in bouts of laughter. While this is considered a side effect, that laughter that results from it can be beneficial for your health. Research shows that laughter can reduce stress, boost the immune system and increase one’s threshold for pain.

How do I alleviate this side effect?

Typically, this side effect will disappear as the effects of the cannabis wear off. However you may want to adjust your medication times to ensure this does not interfere with your daily activities.

 

Medical Cannabis Side Effect: Hunger

Often referred to as the “munchies,” hunger is a very common cannabis side effect. Even though it is considered a side effect, cannabis’s hunger-inducing effects are the reason why many patients use the medicine  in the first place, such as those with anorexia, HIV/AIDS, severe nausea, cachexia or wasting syndrome, and cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy or radiation therapy treatments.

How do I alleviate this side effect?

If you experience unwanted hunger while medicating with cannabis, avoid over indulging in unhealthy snacks and be sure to keep healthy food on hand. As with most side effects of cannabis, this effect will disappear as the effects of the medication wears off.

 

Medical Cannabis Side Effect: Insomnia

Some patients who medicate with cannabis will experience insomnia. Insomnia is the inability to sleep, or chronic sleeplessness. 

How do I alleviate this side effect?

If this you experience insomnia while medicating with cannabis, try reducing your dosage and avoid medicating before bedtime. You may also want to try medicating with an indica  strain, which has more of a sedative effect than sativa strains (which generally cause alertness). 

 

Medical Cannabis Side Effect: Red Eyes

It is common for patients to experience reddening of the eyes after medicating with cannabis. This side effect is temporary, painless and harmless.

How do I alleviate this side effect?

If this you experience red eyes while medicating with cannabis, you can also use over-the-counter eye drops to alleviate the symptom. Otherwise, it is merely cosmetic and will go away on it’s own.

 

Medical Cannabis Side Effect: Respiratory Issues

Smoking cannabis releases tar, carbon monoxide and other chemicals, which may cause respiratory issues in medical cannabis patients.  Also, smoking cannabis exacerbates problems for people who already have upper respiratory problems such as asthma, so people who already have lung problems are not advised to use cannabis by means of smoking it.

Numerous studies have shown cannabis smoke to contain carcinogens, however no link has been found between cannabis and lung cancer, according to a study presented at the American Thoracic Society International Conference.¹ And according to a Harvard University study², cannabis can benefit lung cancer patients by cutting lung cancer tumor growth in half.

How can I alleviate this side effect?

To avoid respiratory issues from using cannabis, try medicating with edible cannabis products or smoking cannabis with a vaporizer. Edible cannabis products help you avoid the inhalation of any smoke or carcinogens, and inhaling cannabis that has been vaporized is much easier on the lungs and causes little to no irritation on the throat or the lungs. If you are experiencing respiratory issues as a result of smoking medical cannabis, stop smoking immediately and talk to your doctor. 

 

Medical Cannabis Side Effect: Short-Term Memory Loss

Since some patients may experience short-term memory loss or difficulty carrying out complicated tasks or conversations after using medical cannabis. This side effect is temporary and has no long term effects on your memory.

How can I alleviate this side effect?

If you experience short-term memory loss while medicating with cannabis, you may want to adjust your medication times so that it does not interfere with your daily activities. As with all medications that may cause drowsiness, do not drive, operate heavy machinery or drink alcohol while using medical cannabis.

 

Medical Cannabis Side Effect: Uneasiness or Anxiety

On occasion, patients may experience feelings of uneasiness or anxiety after using medical cannabis. However, cannabis is also used to relieve anxiety in some patients. It affects everyone differently.

How can I alleviate this side effect?

If you experience uneasiness or anxiety while using medical cannabis, try to medicate in a comfortable and secure environment. This side effect is more common in sativa strains, so you may also want to try medicating with an indica instead.