Cannabis Side Effects

Everyone who ingests cannabis recreationally does so for the much enjoyed high. But whether you’re smoking up for medical or recreational benefits, the fact remains that there are often wanted, or unwanted side effects. When you get side effects like cottonmouth, it can be hard to determine why. It could be the strain, it could be the amount you took, it could be that your body is just reacting to the substance in a different way. Certain people will get certain side effects more often than others, or go through periods of time where one or many side effects are prevelant.


Cottonmouth is one of the most common cannabis side effects. There are cannabinoid receptors in many parts of the body, some of them happen to be located in the salivary glands in the mouth. When smoking cannabis or taking it orally, cannabinoids activate these receptors and reduce the overall amount of saliva usually produced. A survey conducted in 2003 showed that approximately 79% of cannabis users experience cottonmouth. A simple remedy is chewing some gum or drinking a glass of water. But if you’re stuck without either of these, get ready for some cottonmouth!

side effects

The Munchies

Probably the most famous side effect of smoking cannabis is known as the munchies. Essentially, the munchies make you feel like you could eat anything and everything. This of course, then leads you to go on an eating rampage through your entire kitchen. When I mentioned earlier about side effects some people may want to get, this is one of them. Marijuana’s ability to make people extremely hungry is one of the reasons why it is prescribed to cancer patients. Typically when going through chemotherapy, the treatment will rob patients of their appetite. However, a few puffs of cannabis and the munchies will get the job done. On the other hand, it can also be a negative. If you’re somewhere without food, watching your budget, or even simply watching your weight, munchies might not be your best friend.

Effect on Short Term Memory

And of course there’s the classic stoner mantra “wait, what were we talking about?” To which their friend typically replies “I don’t know I forget man.” Cannabis negatively impacts short-term memory in most cases, and it can reduce your ability to form new memories when stoned. However, as you sober up and return to normal, memory function also returns to normal. It’s unclear whether cannabis could cause long-term memory damage, more research needs to be done before any staunch conclusions are made. It’s also important to keep in mind that marijuana’s impact on memory is entirely dependant on what strain you are ingesting and its THC/CBD levels.

No Motivation

While the stereotype of the hippie stoner who sits around and plays video games all day is certainly exaggerated, there is some truth to it. The same survey linked earlier published in 2003 showed that roughly 53% of cannabis smokers said they had a loss of motivation. And while it’s not conclusive, there is some evidence to suggest that using marijuana long-term can lower dopamine levels. This would, in turn, reduce your overall motivation to accomplish things.

While there are many more these are probably the most commonly experienced side effects from smoking cannabis. Keep an eye out for them and combat their effects when you are able!

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