What is a Weed Hangover? Symptoms and Treatment
We all react to weed differently. Some can tolerate its side effects very well. But then again, there are also those who don’t. If you woke up with a headache and some grogginess after smoking weed, you just might be suffering from what’s often referred to as a weed hangover.
But what is a weed hangover? Is it just a myth or a misunderstood phenomenon? More importantly, how do you know you have it and what can you do to relieve its symptoms?
Notable Studies on Weed Hangover
There are two studies worth mentioning when it comes to weed hangover.
One study involved 13 male cannabis smokers who were grouped into two. One group was given cigarettes containing cannabis, while the other was given placebo cigarettes. Before smoking the cigarettes, the participants were asked to perform behavioral tasks such as card sorting as well as free recall. Measurements of their heart rate and carbon dioxide level were also taken.
The following morning, those who received cannabis cigarettes showed significant changes in their measured levels. However, those who received placebo cigarettes did not exhibit any changes. The study’s findings showed that smoking cannabis can induce residual effects called weed hangover.
Another study that was conducted in 2005 also showed that smoking cannabis has an effect on pre- and post-work. It can impair cognitive functions and affect mood. Cannabis smoking also affects memory and psychomotor skills. The study also suggests that prolonged use increases this hangover type of effect.
Understanding Weed Hangover, Its Symptoms and Treatment Options
Now that you know weed hangover is a genuine phenomenon, how would you know that you’re suffering from one?
There’s little research conducted on weed hangover symptoms. But some users report waking up with a headache after a night of smoking cannabis. This effect may be due to dehydration or reduced blood sugar levels. After all, cannabis is known to cause a drop in blood sugar levels which can trigger a headache.
Another symptom of weed hangover is the dreaded cottonmouth. While some people think cottonmouth is caused by dehydration, it’s actually not. According to one study, when cannabinoids activate the endocannabinoid systems found in the submandibular glands, it will result in decreased salivary production and secretion.
Drinking plenty of water can help control these symptoms, however. Placing a cold compress over your forehead and massaging your temples can also help relieve a headache.
Other symptoms of weed hangover are grogginess and temporary memory problems. This is due to the effects of cannabis on your cognition and short-term memory. This may potentially be caused by your high that has continued on into the morning. Light exercise and walking may be able to help relieve some of these symptoms. Staying hydrated is also important.
Other symptoms of weed hangover include fatigue and nausea. Now, this may seem confusing since cannabis is known to induce sleep, and a good night’s sleep should be able to relieve fatigue. Unfortunately, chronic and heavy use of cannabis can affect sleep in the long run and cause nausea and vomiting (cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome). However, this is rare but should be taken seriously. These side effects can be relieved by cessation of cannabis use, taking a hot shower, and eating mild food.
Weed hangover may seem disconcerting. So the best way to prevent this is to start low and go slow.