Is cannabis good for asthma?

weed for asthma

Let’s start by understanding what asthma really is. Asthma is an inflammatory and pulmonary disease, which generally affects the bronchi. More than 300 million people worldwide suffers from it. It manifests itself by episodes called asthma attacks, which occur when there is inflammation and narrowing of the bronchi. Result? The person with asthma has difficulty breathing because air is not circulating properly in the lungs.

The symptoms of this respiratory disorder are quite telling:

  • Fatty cough
  • Wheezing
  • Sudden shortness of breath
  • Difficulty in breathing

Asthma can be caused by multiple factors, among which are allergic reactions, surrounding pollution, tobacco or excessive physical exertion.

Without treatment or care, asthma can cause death. Existing treatments certainly do not cure the disease in itself, but prevent it from becoming more complicated for the patient and from being fatal.

Studies have been carried out to observe the reaction of people who have smoked tobacco in the past, and who have been subjected to cannabis smoke. Indeed, for some time, the medical world has opposed the reliability of this “treatment” for patients suffering from asthma attacks.

The results of these studies showed that tetrahydrocannabinol worked well against asthma by dilating the airways and reducing coughing. In summary, the study claims that cannabis smoke causes bronchodilation, i.e. weakening of the muscles around the bronchi, and not bronchoconstriction (contraction of the bronchi in the lungs), unlike cigarette smoke.

Furthermore, cannabis smoke does not cause central respiratory depression either.

In 2014, another study went even further. The researchers took lung tissue from the bronchi of 88 people with asthma. They then stimulated this tissue in an electric field to generate a contraction. Then they administered THC to the tissue. The researchers found that by stimulating the CB1 receptor, THC helps reduce muscle contractions. The analgesic and bronchodilator effects of cannabis have proven to be useful in the treatment of asthma. By reducing the pressure in the lungs, and by acting on the pain caused by asthma via the sensory nerve cells, cannabis is a great help for these patients. In addition, it reduces inflammation of the bronchi thanks to the anti-inflammatory properties of cannabinoids.

Warning: these are the results of scientific studies done in a professional setting with scientifically chosen doses. It has nothing to do with the excessive consumption of marijuana to cure asthma.

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