When a person smokes marijuana, it is not likely to experience a toxic overdose but it is possible to consume more weed than necessary. Some symptoms such as dizziness, sweating, nausea, vomiting or a sensation of dying may begin if too much marijuana is smoked. Learn to recognize and treat the symptoms of a possible marijuana overdose.
What is Possible
A marijuana overdose is not very likely but it is possible. A person is not likely to die from smoking too much marijuana. Extreme anxiety or psychotic reactions may be experienced where a person loses touch with reality and become paranoid. People can and do become injured due to the effects of marijuana on judgment, perception and coordination. Mixing marijuana and alcohol can lead to a high level of intoxication and risky behavior but the drug in itself is not likely to cause death.
When a temporary overdose of marijuana occurs, it is called “greening out.” Permanent disability and death are not likely during this experience but it is quite common in people who have not used the drug often. The following are symptoms of too much marijuana in the system:
- Fast heart rate
- Pupil dilation
- Shaking or feeling cold
- Shortness of breath
- Temporary feelings of paranoia, fear and anxiety
Usually the symptoms will pass within minutes to hours of marijuana use. If symptoms are more severe, medical attention may be necessary to ensure safety.
Potency levels will be different for each person and depend on the amount and type of drug consumed. More refined and pure versions are available but it is not possible to know how much is in a person’s system at a given time or whether it will cause symptoms of an overdose. The following are just a few scenarios which indicate it may be time to re-evaluate recreational marijuana use:
- Decline in health (physical and mental)
- Wheezing cough which is chronic. The lungs can be greatly impacted by marijuana use.
- Being irresponsible and neglecting work, school, parental or other duties. If a person is neglecting to do basic tasks and performance is declining, it may be time to re-evaluate marijuana use
- The same high cannot be experienced without more or higher doses of marijuana. This may indicate a tolerance level which is building towards a possible addiction
If a marijuana overdose is suspected, it is helpful to keep a watchful eye on the person, offer fluids and rest. Watch for symptoms which warrant further medical care which may include trouble breathing, pale skin color, faster heart rate or unresponsiveness. If all else fails, call 911 and seek immediate medical attention.
Hired Power offers support and resources to individuals with addiction to marijuana or other substances. If you or a loved one need help quitting marijuana, call us for information on how we can help you kick the habit.