Cannabis and panic attacks, what to do?

4 months ago

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Marijuana can cause side effects such as high heart rate, anxiety and unusual thoughts that can contribute to panic attacks.

Many people consume cannabis because of the euphoria it produces. But sometimes, its consumption can cause anxiety and panic attack. When the anxiety is severe, it can become a panic attack in people prone to them.

What is a panic attack?

A panic attack is a feeling of intense fear with unpleasant symptoms. A panic attack is when the brain thinks it is in danger of death, even if it is not true.

Panic attacks have to do with the fight or flight system, which we have to protect ourselves from danger. Once we have all felt a slight flutter of this system when we think we have lost the wallet, when we heard a noise in the dark, or a scare when you drive, can cause the fight or flight system to activate.

This system can be triggered by many experiences even if they are not a real threat, which leaves some people vulnerable to panic attacks.

Symptoms of a panic attack begin with a sensation in the body, such as an increase in heart rate. If the fight or flight system interprets this as a danger sign, pump adrenaline into the blood to try to help you escape the threat.

In some people, the system goes into overdrive, pumping more and more adrenaline into the blood to try to escape the threat. What can cause us the activation of this system would be the feelings of intense fear, high heart rate, excessive sweating, shallow breathing, dizziness, nausea, and derealization.

How can cannabis cause panic attacks?

The unusual sensations and disorientation caused by cannabis can cause a panic attack in some people.

The use of marijuana can cause us to experience many unusual sensations and experiences. If you feel on the edge, or the sensation is overwhelming due to a high or strong dose, your brain may begin to believe that you are in danger.

THC is known to cause euphoria and also has side effects. Many of these, such as dizziness, increased heart rate, and motor deterioration may indicate that something is wrong with the body. Although they are caused by cannabis and are not really a sign of damage, they can activate the fight or flight system, and if they are intense, they can cause anxiety. In some, these sensations can be overwhelming and can become a panic attack.

For example, if you notice that the heart beats strongly, is dizzy and thoughts are disordered, it would be really easy to have an alarming response. This has to do with the levels of individual sensitivity and experience with cannabis

How to treat a panic attack caused by cannabis

Most panic attacks decrease relatively quickly, although they can be quite distressing. They can last from 5 to 30 minutes. The duration can be reduced if the person calms down.

It is important to remember that these feelings are caused by cannabis and will disappear. You have to remember that marijuana does not have a lethal overdose and that the sensation will pass.

It is important to follow these steps: Find a quiet place to recover, breathe calmly and deeply, walk, be clear that there is no danger and remember that these attacks are exhausting, therefore after resting.

How to prevent a panic attack

While panic attacks are not dangerous, they are extremely unpleasant, although there are many ways to experience one. It is important to take the correct dose to reduce side effects, usually occurring by consuming a high dose in first-timers. Consume varieties high in CBD, which reduces the symptoms of THC. The CBD does not cause panic attacks. You have to start little by little until you find the dose that works for you.

Attitude also plays a very important role in the development of panic attacks. If you have a calm, open and accepting attitude toward the experience, marijuana is much less likely to cause a panic attack.

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The reason I stopped smoking was due to panic attacks, so if I'll ever smoke again it will be CBD.

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From many different strains? Even microdosing? Could be the environment or bud quality/genetics

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No, but it happened from two-three different strains. I was really stressed at the moment so that might have caused it aswell. Being on Smoke actually makes me want to smoke a bit again, just a tiny bit once or twice pr. month.

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Good to know about it!
Thanks for the comment @arsenal49

God Bless

I stopped smoking because it caused me anxiety

I used never actually had those problems before me and a few friend almost went to jail for growing. Since then I had for about a year perhaps panic attacks ifni smoke just a bit too much. So I had to stop for a while. After the break and detox I felt better when smoking. Not everything went away completly and it took time to get where I am again. They do resurface on very rear occasions if i smoke with someone I don't like or if the person behaves suspiciously. But I mostly have it under control and it doesn't cause me anymore problems.

I stopped smoking for a long time since it made me super paranoid and totally stressed out... but now that I can buy High CBD strains like Charlotte’s Web I am experimenting with super micro dosing THC to activate the CBD in my Pipe.... Seems to be working. I buy 3 grams of Cookies or Blue Dream and it lasts me a year.

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Good to know about it...

I appreciate how that info was well presented, unbiased and objective. Thank you for sharing this work of reference.

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Thank you so much!!

Good sharing so we will know to adjust the situation. I NEVER SMOKE FOR MY WHOLE LIFE.