Thursday, May 30, 2024

Does Marijuana Dehydrate You?

 

The temperatures are soaring and people are sweltering under record heat and trapped smoke from wildfires.  Sticky clothing, irritable moods and hot cars seems to be on the menu this summer.

Country singer Jason Aldean had to reschedule a concert cut short after he suffered heat stroke on stage, a representative said. Aldean later said he was “doing fine” after rushing off stage Saturday with what he described as “a combination of dehydration and just heat exhaustion.”

Alcohol is known to dehydrate you and is not encouraged in extreme heat, but what about marijuana?

bottled water
Photo by Suzy Hazelwood from Pexels

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Alcohol is a diuretic and can lead to dehydration. It causes your body to remove fluids from your blood through your renal system, which includes the kidneys, ureters, and bladder, at a much quicker rate than other liquids.   Marijuana is not a diuretic, so it doesn’t send a message to empty your body of fluids.

One of the signs of dehydration is “cotton mouth”. But contrary to popular belief, marijuana cotton mouth is not caused by consuming. Scientists discovered that it occurs when active compounds in marijuana, known as cannabinoids, interact with the human endocannabinoid system. This system is comprised of cannabinoid receptors throughout our brains and bodies that are activated when we ingest cannabis. These receptor sites include submandibular saliva glands located in the bottom of our mouths that produce almost three-quarters of our required saliva. When you use marijuana, certain cannabinoids attach to areas of the brain that normally send messages to your parasympathetic nervous system to produce saliva, essentially slowing it down. This slowdown quickly results in a saliva shortage making your mouth very dry.

For very frequent and large dose users, it can cause some dehydration via extreme nausea from overuse, but the causal user doesn’t have to be concerned.

marijuana edibles
Photo by Daria-Yakovleva via Pixabay

When the thermometer hits the high mark, you might want to adjust the way you consume.  Avoid things that involved active heat and consider a vape, gummy, or oil.

Early symptoms of dehydration include feeling thirsty, being lightheaded, cotton mouth, using the bathroom less and tiredness. Should you start experiencing any of these, go to a cool place and drink lots of water.

RELATED: 7 Ways To Enjoy Cannabis If You Don’t Want to Smoke

A little lagniappe, as long as you stay hydrated while eating spicy food, the perspiration coming from enjoying a three alarm meal will force your body to cool itself quickly and more efficiently.

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