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Lift&co Cannabis Learning Guide: Health Effects of Cannabis (Part 5)

Cannabis Learning Guide

Like any other medicine or treatment, cannabis has side effects. While everyone experiences its effects differently, here are some of the most common symptoms Lift & Co. users reported with marijuana consumption.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does cannabis stay in the body?

Cannabis remains in your system for longer than its effects last. Cannabis can stay in the blood and saliva for up to a week after consumption. For regular users, it can be traced in urine from four days to three months. Cannabis can be tested in a hair sample, and unless you shave your head, cannabis can be detected in your hair for a long time. For occasional consumers, however, it tends to not be traceable in the hair.

Is smoking joints bad for your lungs?

While cannabis smoke isn’t as harmful as cigarette smoke, it still releases toxins and carcinogens when it is combusted, so it has potential to do some damage to your lungs. There is limited research on its long-term effects, but according to the Canadian Lung Association, early research studies have demonstrated harm that can lead to chronic bronchitis. Other studies suggest that chronic cannabis smoking is linked to cough, sputum production, wheezing and a decline in lung function. More research is needed on second-hand cannabis smoke, though it has many of the same toxins and chemicals found in directly inhaled marijuana smoke.

Is cannabis addictive?

There isn’t yet a conclusive answer on whether or not cannabis is addictive. While cannabis isn’t labelled an addictive substance, a percentage of users report a dependency on it. This is known as Cannabis Use Disorder, and it’s said to affect 10% of marijuana users. However, the withdrawal symptoms reported to be associated with ceasing cannabis use—such as trouble sleeping and unpleasant dreams—are minimal when compared to those associated with other drugs.

How can I stop being high?

While the effects of cannabis subside after a few hours, there are a few ways to ease unpleasant effects. Some noted techniques include using high-CBD strain to offset the THC; smelling or chewing on a black peppercorn; going for a walk; drinking lots of water and distracting yourself with a movie or TV show. Just remember: It’ll be over soon, and no one has ever died from cannabis consumption, ever. Hang in there!

Does cannabis show up in a drug test?

All forms of cannabis, including tinctures and edibles, can be detected by a drug test. But it depends on a number of factors, like how often you’re using cannabis and how fast your metabolism works. For regular users, marijuana can linger in the system — and be detected in a urine or blood test—for as long as 90 days. Healthy people can usually clear it from their system between 30-45 days. If a novice user smokes once, it can be out of the system in two days or up to 10.

According to Weed: The User’s Guide:
• Blood: one time users 12 to 24 hrs vs. regular users 2 to 7 day.
• Urine: one time users 1 to 7 days vs. regular users 1 week to 3 months.

Does cannabis go stale?

Like prescription medicines, cannabis should be stored in a cool, dry place. While there are expiration dates on legal cannabis packages in Canada, it tends to last much longer. But it is susceptible to mold and mildew when exposed to temperatures between 25 and 29 degrees, so it’s best to store your stash in a glass jar with an air-tight lid.

Known Side Effects

Anxiety and Paranoia

THC is known to help with anxiety in small doses, but it has the potential to cause the opposite effect in large doses. That’s why it’s important to monitor consumption of edibles and concentrates. Certain people may be genetically predisposed to cannabis-induced anxiety as a result of brain chemistry. To avoid this unpleasant effect, it’s best to stick to 1:1 strains, where there are roughly equal amounts of cannabidiol (CBD) to THC, or very low-THC, high-CBD strains. CBD reportedly has a more calming effect, and cannabidiol will counteract feelings of distress.

Dry Mouth

To avoid one of the most common symptoms associated with cannabis, especially strains with high THC, have a glass of water on hand. Dry mouth, or cottonmouth, happens after consumption of the drug, leaving you parched. This happens when our submandibular glands— the salivary glands in the floor of the mouth—are repressed by the activation of cannabinoid receptors. Fear not! Drink fluids or suck on a hard candy to help replenish saliva.

Increased Appetite

THC is known to activate areas of the brain linked to hunger, so don’t be surprised if your appetite is spiked after consuming cannabis. Unless you’re using marijuana to increase your appetite, this can be a problematic side effect. Cannabis strains high in CBD or THC can help curb your munchies, but it’s also a good idea to have healthy snacks close by.

Forgetfulness

“Wait… what was I talking about?” Forgetfulness is often parodied on TV shows and movies by stoner characters, but it can be a real problem: impaired short-term memory is common amongst cannabis consumers. However, impaired memory from cannabis is not the same as blackouts associated with heavy drinking. Lift & Co. users report it’s best to choose a high-CBD strain if you want to reduce risks of impairing your memory.

Red Eyes

Red, dry eyes are often associated with cannabis use. THC can lower blood pressure and dilate blood vessels, which causes red eyes. Eyes can also be irritated by smoke, if that’s the consumption method. The best way to combat red eyes is to stay hydrated. Use eye drop solution on occasion, though don’t rely on it long-term because it can eventually dry the eye out.

Sleepiness

Some people take cannabis specifically to help them fall asleep. But it can also be an unwanted side effect for those wishing to stay alert and awake. Lift & Co. users report it’s best to choose a sativa or high-CBD strain over an indica if you wish to avoid drowsiness.

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