Substance Use

Marijuana Overdose: What You Need to Know

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Overdosing on Marijuana: What You Need to Know

Marijuana comes from a plant called Cannabis sativa, also known as hemp. The plant contains hundreds of different chemicals, including THC and CBD. THC is the compound that gives marijuana its psychoactive properties, while CBD is a non-psychoactive compound with many potential medicinal benefits.

When people refer to marijuana, they usually refer to THC-rich strains of the plant. These strains are typically more potent than CBD-rich strains, and they are the ones that are most likely to be associated with overdoses.

THC is short for Delta-9-Tetrahydrocannabinol, and it’s this compound that gives marijuana its psychoactive effects. When THC enters the bloodstream, it binds to cannabinoid receptors in the brain and central nervous system. This action results in people’s “high” when they use marijuana.

Though marijuana overdoses are relatively rare, they can and do happen. However, unlike most other drugs, you are not likely to die from a marijuana overdose, but it can still lead to severe health consequences. 

Contact Zinnia Health today if you or someone you know is struggling with cannabis addiction and you are concerned that they may be at risk of a marijuana overdose. You can reach us through our website or by calling our 24/7 helpline at (855) 430-9439.

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Can You Overdose on Marijuana?

Whether or not you can overdose on marijuana is a controversial topic, as a marijuana overdose is very different from other drugs, such as opioids.

There are no reports of anyone dying from marijuana use alone, but there are some cases where people have experienced severe side effects. There also have been indirect deaths associated with marijuana, such as car accidents caused by people under the influence.

So, while it is technically possible to overdose on marijuana, it is unlikely to be fatal. However, some risks are associated with using large amounts of marijuana, especially if you are inexperienced.

What to Do in An Emergency?

If you suspect someone close to you is overdosing on marijuana, call 911 immediately.

Please call 911 right away to get help and advice for a person who is overdosing.

What Are the Treatment Options for a Marijuana Overdose?

There are no specific treatment options for a marijuana overdose, as there is no antidote. Treatment will primarily be focused on managing the person’s symptoms and keeping them comfortable until the effects of the drug wear off.

Sometimes, people may be given medication to help with anxiety or nausea. If the person is having trouble breathing, they may be given oxygen.

Is a Marijuana Overdose Dangerous?

While a marijuana overdose is not typically fatal, it can still be dangerous. The main risks associated with a marijuana overdose are anxiety and panic attacks.

Also, secondary effects from marijuana use can lead to fatal accidents, so while the overdose may not directly lead to death, it can indirectly cause severe damage.

How Much Marijuana Does It Take To Overdose?

There is no definitive answer to this question, as everyone reacts differently to marijuana. However, it is generally agreed that it would take a large amount of marijuana toxicity to cause an overdose.

In most cases, people would need to consume extremely high levels of THC before they begin to experience any severe side effects. Multiple factors contribute to the impact of marijuana, such as your weight, tolerance, and method of consumption. A THC overdose would need to contain high potency; ingestion is typically the most dangerous form of cannabis use.

What Are the Signs and Symptoms of a Marijuana Overdose?

While marijuana overdoses are rare, they can happen. Marijuana overdose symptoms include:

  • Anxiety
  • Paranoia
  • Panic attacks
  • High blood pressure
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Confusion
  • Delusions
  • Hallucinations
  • Cognitive impairment
  • Loss of consciousness

Overdosing can be unpleasant and lead to other health effects. If you or somebody you know is experiencing these symptoms, it is essential to seek medical attention immediately.

What Increases The Risk of a Marijuana Overdose?

Different risk factors can increase the chances of a marijuana overdose. These include:

  • Inhaling large amounts of smoke
  • The THC concentration consumed
  • Using marijuana for the first time
  • Mixing marijuana with other drugs or alcohol
  • Having a history of anxiety or panic disorders
  • Taking high doses of edibles or other consumables
  • Age, height, and weight

Why Does a Marijuana Overdose Occur?

An overdose may occur because marijuana may affect the body’s ability to regulate itself. The THC in marijuana can interfere with the brain’s ability to process information, resulting in mood, perception, and coordination changes.

Marijuana is often mixed with other drugs or alcohol, leading to dangerous and unpredictable effects. Always be aware of what you are taking and how it may interact with other substances.

How to Tell if Someone Is on Marijuana?

Since the effects of marijuana are usually mild in comparison to other drugs, marijuana abuse is common, and a reported 1 in 10 users will develop a marijuana addiction. Here are some signs and symptoms of users under the influence of marijuana.

  • Anxiety
  • Paranoia
  • Memory loss
  • Lack of coordination
  • Increased heart rate
  • Decreased motivation
  • Dry mouth
  • Red eyes
  • Psychosis

These side effects are only temporary and will disappear once the drug wears off. However, others may last longer. For example, some users report experiencing anxiety and paranoia even after the effects of the drug have worn off. 

If you are experiencing these symptoms but find it difficult to stop the drug use, contact Zinnia Health to seek help for marijuana addiction.

Why Would Someone Take Marijuana?

Marijuana is used for many different reasons. Some use it medically, while others prefer recreational use.

Medicinally, marijuana is known to have health benefits if used properly. Marijuana impacts the endocannabinoid system, which regulates many bodily functions, including mood, appetite, memory, pain, inflammation, sleep, fertility, and more. When THC binds to cannabinoid receptors in the endocannabinoid system, it alters these functions. For example, THC can increase appetite by binding to receptors in the digestive system or reduce pain by binding to receptors in the nervous system.

There are many medical conditions for that marijuana can be prescribed. Some of those include:

  • Chronic pain
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Insomnia
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Seizures
  • Panic attacks

The more marijuana use is studied, the more benefits are being discovered. For example, marijuana has also been effective in treating Alzheimer’s, cancer, Crohn’s disease, and multiple sclerosis.

How to Help Someone With a Marijuana Use Disorder?

Overcoming substance abuse is difficult, but it’s possible with the right help. Addiction treatment is available to those who need it, and many different programs are available.

Outpatient programs allow people to live at home and continue working or going to school while receiving treatment. This type of program typically lasts for a few months.

Inpatient programs require that people stay in a hospital or treatment facility for a certain period, usually 30 days. This type of program provides around-the-clock care and supervision.

Aftercare programs are designed to help people after they have completed an inpatient or outpatient program. This can include counseling, support groups, and other services. If you or a loved one is struggling with a marijuana disorder, don’t hesitate to contact Zinnia Health, where we can help you find the treatment you need.

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