Tuesday, October 3, 2023

Can You Be Allergic To Marijuana?

Allergies can be all year round and 24/7 making them difficult to fully enjoy your day.  There are normal allergies like pollen, strawberries, dust mites, peanuts, animal fur and bee and wasp stings.  Then there are wacky allergies like water, coins, sunlight, and sweat. But can you be allergic to marijuana?

Some people have an alcohol allergy or intolerance.  Alcohol allergy is more rare and more severe, but intolerance isn’t a barrel of fun.  Globally we spend over $40 billion a year to treat allergies in one way or another.

With more and more people using cannabis recreationally or medically, it is natural allergies would pop up.  With 45+ million consuming in Canadian and the US, you are going to a number who find it has an unfortunate side effect.

a man holding his hand up in front of his face

RELATED: Science Says Medical Marijuana Improves Quality Of Life

Allergy to marijuana is considered rare, but a reports of allergies to marijuana have been documented. It’s estimated perhaps up to 10% of people may have an allergy or a reaction to marijuana or THC. The number may increase as the plant legalization and use grows.

How do know if you are allergic to marijuana?  Common sense to start with, if you consume and you have an onset of reactions, it is a major clue. The best way to diagnose an allergy is to perform a challenge in a safe setting with a trusted doctor.

Symptoms from a cannabis allergy may include

  • Asthma symptoms such as wheezing
  • Hives
  • Skin rash
  • Swelling/watering/itching eyes
  • Sore throat
  • Shortness of breath
  • Nasal symptoms such as sneezing
  • Anaphylaxis in rare cases

Symptoms of a marijuana allergy can range from mild to severe. Most marijuana allergy symptoms occur immediately in adults; less frequently, they can be delayed for hours. Adults with a marijuana allergy usually show symptoms within hours or days after first being exposed to cannabis. While it is rare, it is possible to experience anaphylaxis after exposure to marijuana. It’s important to recognize your symptoms and seek medical attention immediately if you suspect a severe allergic reaction.

medical marijuana
Photo by Visivasnc/Getty Images

If you think that you have developed an allergy to marijuana, the best thing to do is avoid it. This means no longer smoking weed or consuming edibles, as well as refraining from touching it and having any secondhand exposure to it.

RELATED: Nauseous? Marijuana Might Provide Immediate Relief

This isn’t currently a clinical treatment for marijuana. Marijuana allergy is not curable however, some individuals grow out of it throughout adulthood. Symptoms may become less severe over time.

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