Science has pursued no credible research on the cause and effect between cannabis and asthma. There is no substantive proof of a correlation between them. But, it’s way too early to board the cannabis’ advocates’ wagon.
Asthma is a chronic respiratory disease that currently affects up to 300 million people worldwide with spasms in the bronchi of the lungs and difficulty in breathing. It is usually triggered by an allergic reaction or other forms of environmental hypersensitivity.
Astma.net claims, “Marijuana smoke is similar to tobacco smoke in several ways. Marijuana smoke has about the same amounts of tar and more cancer-causing chemicals than tobacco smoke. Both types of smoke increase inflammation. Both trigger symptoms such as cough and wheeze. However, marijuana smoke may affect airway obstruction differently.”
But, these claims do not all hold water. For instance, marijuana may include more tar than tobacco, but cannabis smokers do not approach the frequency of smoking typical of cigarette habits. Furthermore, the inflammatory properties of tobacco and marijuana differ greatly.
It is true that cannabis smoke produces coughing and wheezing, but the mechanism of action differs, too.
Still, we must accept the fact that the inhalation of any smoke presents a risk. For asthma patients predisposed to bronchial irritation, the risk is higher.
The 5 asthma-related possibilities
Without the science to rely on, we must trust anecdotal history and some common sense.
1. Pain relief: Asthma sufferers regularly experience chest pain. They describe the pain as a deep stabbing ache or knifing sensation that grows through the attach. Experience with certain cannabis strains confirms their analgesic effects. Cannabinoids apparently reduce compression and constriction in the lungs with a bronchodilatory result.
2. Antibiotic powers: Some cases of asthma are diagnosed as originating in childhood viral or bacterial infections. They have been treated with standard pharmaceutical antibiotics.
In unrelated research studies, cannabinoids have shown strengths as bactericidal approaches to infectious pathogens.
3. Bronchodilator: With asthma, the bronchioles constrict. This reduces the oxygen flow to the alveoli and blood system.
Bronchodilation is vital to an asthmatic’s wellbeing, and it is typically remedied with pharmaceutical medications and/or inhalers. If there is a single area needing profound research, this is it. But, there is some reason to believe cannabis has bronchodilatory powers worth respecting.
4. Antispasmodic: Cannabinoids have a known and proven antispasmodic feature. Cannabis and its derivatives have played critical therapeutic roles in treating and managing involuntary muscle spasms including smooth muscles.
Spasms in the smooth muscles that make up the bronchi and bronchioles create the almost uncontrollable hacking coughs suffered by asthma victims. Cannabinoids have a record of fighting the related inflammation and muscular constriction.
5. Anti-inflammatory: If asthma is a chronic inflammatory condition, reducing and eliminating the inflammation condition and cause is the best therapy.
Asthma patients routinely have some level of inflammation among their bronchi and bronchioles. If the inflammation increases, it aggravates the bronchial tissues and that leads to muscular constrictions and spasms. Cannabis not only has known anti-inflammatory properties but also breeders are developing strains to target specific health issues.
5 asthma-related cannabis strains
- Green Crack: A pure Sativa-dominant hybrid, Green Crack features a sweet fruity, tropical, and citrus flavor. A potent energizer with THC at 15% to 25%, it’s best for morning and daytime consumption.
- Charlotte’s Web: This perennial favorite takes a different approach for asthma patients who don’t want the psychoactive effects of THC but need relief from pain and inflammation. Charlotte’s Web is a legend for medicinal uses, a happy, giggly, and focused experience
- Blue Dream: This Sativa-dominant hybrid triggers full body relaxation and cerebral euphoria with 21% THC. Blue Dream provides long-lasting symptom relief without heavy sedation.
- Cannatonic: This strain is high in CBD with less than 6% THC. It’s the right medicinal cannabis for those who want relief without being stoned. A smooth buzz lets you work and socialize without the stress associated with asthma or THC-loaded marijuana.
- Big Wreck: Here is a 70/30 Indica-dominant hybrid. Mildly potent, Big Wreck is good medicine. Big Wreck lifts your mood and relieves physical and mental stresses
What can you draw from this?
It’s not enough to repeat that more research is needed. Absent the research and in the tradition of a long history of anecdotal records, you should consider the relationship between cannabis and asthma.
- Inhaling anything burnt will irritate the respiratory system. Frequent and heavy smoking will maximize the irritation. Asthma victims would be wise not to smoke anything.
- Smoking cannabis may have a considerable advantage over smoking tobacco. The amount of tar and carcinogens from smoking remains open to debate. But, asthma victims already have compromised respiratory systems, so smoking anything raises their risk.
- If you must smoke, certain strains of cannabis hold more promise than others in terms of anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, and analgesic properties.
- Those same properties are available through consumption of cannabis derivates without smoking. Cannabis oils and edibles can deliver some of the same reliefs without the negative effects of smoking.
- Smoking or not, asthma victims must assess their personal situation and condition before they choose their option.
The much-discussed influence of cannabis on respiratory cancer is a separate matter. But, asthma patients must accept their losses here. Mild or serious cases, asthma patients would simply be smart not to smoke regardless of the beneficial properties of cannabis.