Can You Overdose on (Weed) Marijuana?

Weed is a term used for the cannabis plant, along with marijuana, Mary Jane, hashish, dope, and many other street names.

Although there is no existing report that excessive use of weed leads to toxic nor fatal results, too much consumption of weed, either by ingestion or inhalation produces unwanted effects in the body and the brain. Yes, you can overdose from weed use, and no, you will not get poisoned or die from it. When you vape weed oil concentrate or smoke some dried weed, or when you eat brownies or other food containing weed in excessive amounts, you may experience dizziness and lack of coordination, which could result in falling or stumbling.  Marijuana overdose will not damage any body organ, but then, falling and stumbling may result in injury.

The US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) lists weed as a controlled substance under Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act.


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What Happens When You Overdose On Marijuana?

Weed has both psychological and physical effects. The desired “high” from weed use brings a feeling of euphoria, heightened senses, feelings of well-being, relaxation, and reduced stress. When consumed in excessive amounts, or when smoked rapidly in a short period of time, users term the experience as “greening out.” Green out usually happens to first-time users or to the initiates because they do not yet know their limit. A long-time user may also green out when they consume larger quantities to produce the intense “high” he or she desires. Long-time users need progressively higher dosages to get the desired effects of weed use.

As in all substances, whether alcohol or drugs, overdoses occur with excessive or very rapid consumption. The use of inordinate quantities of weed may produce unwanted side effects:

  1. Intense Anxiety — This is the most commonly reported side effect of weed use. Intense anxiety or panic attacks are sudden feelings of fear within minutes after onset of the effects and may last up to 30 minutes. There is a general feeling that something bad is going to happen (paranoia), even a feeling that the overdose victim is dying. Palpitations, rapid heartbeat, shortness of breath, feeling of coldness and uncontrolled shaking may accompany or result from panic attacks.
  2. Nausea — Weed overdose also produces a feeling of distress, and may be accompanied by blurry vision, dizziness, and vomiting.
  3. Loss of coordination — Impaired hearing, time distortion, and impaired psychomotor behavior resulting from weed overdose puts the user to risks of falling or stumbling. Driving vehicles may result in injury or death from crashes.

How Much Marijuana Is Too Much?

Weed comes in many forms. The most common is the dried leaves and flowers of the plant. The dried flowers and seeds (also called “bud”) is more potent in view of the presence of more cannabis oil in the seeds. Hashish is the cannabis plant in resin form and packed as blocks. And then there are the cannabis oil, cannabis wax, and cannabis concentrates which are the most potent among the forms of consumption.

Different cannabis varieties, the plant part used, the place where they are grown, the form of processing done to extract the active substance, even the type of accessories used to consume weed, all contribute to the relative potency and amount of consumption. Until standard dosages and forms made from weed products, and a scientific study made on the quantities that will produce unwanted effects, we will not be able to exactly answer how much weed is too much.

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What are the Symptoms of Weed Overdose?

The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) produced a chart of acute effects and health risks of commonly abused substances. For weed, the following undesirable acute symptoms and dangerous effects are listed:

  1. distorted sensory perception
  2. slowed reaction time
  3. Impaired balance and coordination
  4. increased heart rate
  5. impaired learning, memory
  6. anxiety
  7. panic attacks
  8. psychosis

Marijuana Overdose Help

The overdose symptoms are both psychological and physical. Although they may not be so severe and life-threatening as in other abused substances, the affected individual must be helped. He must be distracted from the psychological effects, and guided to avoid physical injury arising from impaired balance and coordination.

Is Weed Addictive?

Chronic use of weed results to addiction, the psychological and physical dependence on continued use at larger quantities. Progressively larger doses are needed by the user because the body and the mind develop tolerance to the substance. Tolerance increases the chance of overdose because the increase in dose may be beyond the threshold that the user can tolerate. In later stages of addiction, the user will experience uncomfortable and distressing withdrawal symptoms when he stops using weed.

What Are The Effects Of Marijuana Addiction?

A 2014 study on long-term effects of weed use had been conducted leading to indications that prolonged use can be associated with a reduction in brain connectivity and structural damage to gray matter. Addicted users may also manifest frequent respiratory infections, persistent cough, possible health decline, weight loss and general degradation of physical health.

Persons addicted to weed will also experience withdrawal symptoms when he stops using weed. Abstinence from weed produces one or a combination of the following symptoms:

  1. Anxiety
  2. Changes in sleeping (e.g., insomnia, fatigue)
  3. Changes in eating (e.g., reduced appetite/weight loss)
  4. Depressed mood
  5. Irritability
  6. Restlessness

In addition, physical symptoms may occur, such as abdominal pain, chills, fever, headaches, uncontrollable shaking, and excessive sweating.

As in other addiction cases resulting from substance use disorder, the weed user faces the problem of keeping up with his daily responsibilities at work and at home. His social relationships also suffer and he loses connection with co-workers, friends, and family members.

Addiction Can Be Treated

Although weed addiction may not need close medical attention, inasmuch as the withdrawal symptoms are not so severe, the person may benefit from medication and behavioral interventions of a rehabilitation facility. Addiction is a psychological disease that needs to be acted on.

If you are, or you have a friend who needs rehabilitation from weed or any substance use disorder disorder, contact us for a luxurious drug and alcohol treatment.

Feel free to call 949-276-2886 and one of our addiction specialists will help get the information and help you need.

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Medical disclaimer:

Sunshine Behavioral Health strives to help people who are facing substance use disorder, addiction, mental health disorders, or a combination of these conditions. It does this by providing compassionate care and evidence-based content that addresses health, treatment, and recovery.

Licensed medical professionals review material we publish on our site. The material is not a substitute for qualified medical diagnoses, treatment, or advice. It should not be used to replace the suggestions of your personal physician or other health care professionals.

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