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Generally, there is a long list of qualifying conditions that patients can use medical marijuana to manage, none of which are respiratory symptoms. Sometimes, managing these conditions means smoking weed.

So, it is no surprise that some folks argue for smoking weed when sick with the flu or cold. About five years ago, even experts were on the fence when asked questions like “Does smoking weed help when sick?”

This article considers various factors that are relevant to this subject: is smoking weed bad when sick? Does weed help when sick? And the alternatives to smoking weed when sick.

Is Smoking Weed Bad When Sick?

If you’re struggling with the “Is smoking weed bad when sick?” conundrum, you should know right away that smoking anything, including pot, when you’re down with a cold or the flu is bad for your respiratory system.

So, the question of “Is smoking weed bad when sick?” is a matter of how bad it could be for you. Generally, in such scenarios, persons who smoke weed often may feel a less significant negative effect than those who smoke it occasionally.

Smoking cannabis involves burning cannabis plant materials, which results in the release of smoke. The smoke travels straight to your bloodstream and lungs, irritating and harming your organs.

So, does smoking weed help when sick? If you have respiratory, nasal, or throat symptoms, smoking weed when sick may not help you feel better. Instead, it may even aggravate existing conditions.

Although there is much to do in terms of research, a 2018 study reviewed available data on people who smoked marijuana to alleviate respiratory symptoms. The study found low-strength evidence that smoking marijuana was linked to sputum production, cough, and wheezing. Based on this conclusion, the answer to the “Does smoking weed help when sick?” question is No.

Still, some folks claim that smoking when sick did help with their respiratory symptoms.

The Harms of Smoking Weed When Sick

Counterarguments often point out that smoking weed when sick may not be harmful, as cannabinoids and terpenes are potent enough to address some symptoms. Therefore, a write-off might be in order.

In this case, smoking is not just about lighting a joint; it expands to cover vaping, which is still controversial.

But the truth is that the harms of smoking a joint when sick far outweigh the benefits. The potentially harmful effects of smoking weed when sick are outlined below:

      • Chills, colds, and dry throat are some of the side effects people get when they smoke weed. For such persons, smoking weed when sick could make things worse.
      • The effects of smoking weed are direct on the lung and the respiratory system as a whole. Your body, which is already sick, may become irritable and find it harder to fight off the symptoms when you burden the respiratory system with smoke.
      • If smoking weakens your respiratory system, your body may become more prone to various diseases, including the flu.
      • A pile of scientific evidence shows that smoking can damage the lungs and cause COPD.

    Looking at these, does smoking weed help when sick? Can you smoke weed when sick? Clearly, it doesn’t seem worth it to continue smoking when sick.

    But does that also mean weed does not help at all when sick? NO. Weed can help tremendously when sick; it is only subject to probes when smoking is involved.

    So, how does weed help when sick?

    Does Weed Help When Sick?

    Yes, weed can help when sick; the consumption mode is what really matters in this scenario. While a hot cup of tea can help your body on the path to revival, cannabis can help with other symptoms such as fatigue, joint pain, sleeplessness, restlessness, and headache.

    Weed and the Flu

    Seasonal flu usually comes with troubling symptoms that could make life seem extremely miserable at a given time.

    Some symptoms include chills, sore throat, cough, stuffy nose, runny nose, muscle aches, headaches, and fatigue. The scary part is that, in some cases, they manifest all at once.

    While cannabis is not a cure-all remedy, studies across various institutions have shown that cannabis is effective for managing headaches and an anti-inflammatory suppressant for muscle-associated pains. THC is a well-known energy burst that can snap you out of fatigue and keep you in better spirits until the flu wanes.

    Some resources also claim that CBD can help relieve cough, sore throat, and stuffy nose; however, these claims need to be sufficiently substantiated.

    Yet, it helps to know that you can use weed to manage some flu symptoms.

    Weed and a Cold 

    Common cold shares similar symptoms with the flu, though at a milder rate. For many people, the best thing to do when struck with a cold is to occasionally cozy up with a bowl of hot soup or a cup of hot tea until the cold goes.

    Cannabinoids, especially CBD, can help in various capacities to relieve cold symptoms—just as with the flu. If you take OTC drugs such as NyQuil for colds, you should know that the relationship between NyQuil and weed is a little messy.

    The combination can aggravate drowsiness and, in some cases, make you less cognitive. Consider forgoing one for the other.

    How to Enjoy Weed When Sick — Without Smoking

    Does weed help when sick? Yes. The trick is to trash the idea of smoking weed when sick and try smoke-free methods of taking weed.

    Also, lean more towards CBD products than canna-products with high THC content. Below are some ways to enjoy weed when sick without smoking.

    Try Tinctures!

    In terms of being kind to your lungs, throats, and entire respiratory system, tinctures are a far better option. Additionally, tinctures are far more efficient as they produce more potent and faster-acting results.

    Side by side with smoking weed when sick, a bottle of cannabis tincture will make an obvious first choice.

    Make Infused Tea

    Since you were already going to attempt to ward off the cold with a nice cup of hot tea, why not amp up the efficacy with cannabis-infused tea? You get to enjoy your tea and the therapeutic benefits of cannabis, relieving you of some of the flu or cold symptoms: two birds, one stone.

    How do you make infused tea? Don’t worry; we’ve provided a step-by-step guide for making cannabis tea.

    With cannabis tea, it may take a while for the effects of cannabis to hit, but when it does, it hits right.

    Explore CBD Products

    When it comes to CBD products, there is a wide variety to choose from, some of which include softgels, lotions, balms, ointments, oils, blends, and gummies, among others.

    Some of these CBD products, such as softgels, come with proper dosing, so you know how much of it you’re taking and determine what dose works best for you.

    For maximum effect, you can apply massage balms, ointments, lotions, and other topicals directly into the affected area to ease flu-related muscle aches.

    Consuming Weed Safely and Responsibly With Elevate Holistics

    We’re all about helping individuals have a better experience while navigating the world of cannabis. As such, quality cannabis education is one of our guiding principles.

    Please, feel free to ask us any questions about smoking weed when sick or any other aspect of weed consumption. We’re here for you.

    Also, in three quick and easy steps, a licensed physician can qualify you for your state’s medical marijuana program and get your medical marijuana card ASAP – all from the comfort of your home.

    Your MMJ card provides you access to lab-certified, high-quality CBD products at your local dispensary, saving you the risk of using the untested CBD products lining the shelves of supermarkets.

    Click here or the link below to book a call with us and start your journey to a responsible and safe cannabis experience.

    Enjoy cannabis safely with your MMJ card.

    Having an MMJ card is the safest, most efficient way to enjoy high-quality, affordable weed. Get your card 100% online in under 15 minutes.

    Get Your MMJ Card Right From Home

    Elevate Holistics’ process is quick, affordable, and done entirely online. It’s never been so easy.

    About the author

    Michael Lawal is a seasoned content writer with specialized expertise in the medical cannabis industry. With a background that blends journalism and health sciences, Michael has a knack for translating complex medical cannabis research into accessible and engaging content. His writing portfolio showcases a range of work from informative articles and research summaries to patient education materials. Committed to raising awareness about the benefits and responsible use of medical cannabis, Michael's work is a valuable resource for both consumers and professionals in the field.
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