Weed can make you feel many things. It can make you feel euphoric, anxious, or even calm. Among the various feelings, many stoners are also convinced that using weed makes them feel dehydrated. But does weed dehydrate you? Here’s what we know.
Does Smoking Weed Make You Dehydrated?
There is no evidence that smoking weed, eating edibles, or using a bong causes dehydration.
However, weed can result in symptoms that lead to dehydration or symptoms that resemble dehydration.
For example, Medical News Today says that people develop cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome in some rare cases. If you’re unfamiliar with cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome, it’s a rare condition that develops in long-term cannabis users. Severe bouts of vomiting and diarrhea characterize it. Intense bouts of vomiting and diarrhea can lead to dehydration regardless of the reason.
Still, you don’t have to have a serious condition to experience dehydration from the effects of weed. For example, some stoners report that edibles cause diarrhea. You may get diarrhea from edibles because of food poisoning, allergies, or cannabidiol (CBD). Even though CBD is considered safe, high levels sometimes cause diarrhea in some people.
Another effect of weed that can cause dehydration is sweating. According to Herb, using dabs, which is a concentrated form of cannabis, can lead to intense sweating. The reason, according to Herb is the coughing. Herb says, “The sweats are usually a result of taking a dab hit that is a little too big and landing yourself in a coughing fit.”
You can reduce the likelihood of dab sweats by taking smaller dabs and reduce your chances of being dehydrated by drinking water throughout the day.
Finally, sometimes drugs can indirectly cause dehydration, according to Very Well Mind, by “stimulating people to be over-active, and interfering with their attention and body awareness”. In other words, you may be more active than usual or ignore the fact that you’re thirsty.
How to Treat Dehydration from the Effects of Weed
Did some side effects of weed dehydrate you? While dehydration is serious when it gets severe, mild cases can be treated at home.
If you’re suffering from severe vomiting and diarrhea from cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome, you should seek medical attention. The hospital will likely give you Intravenous (IV) hydration if you’re severely dehydrated.
According to Cleveland Clinic, the symptoms can sometimes be treated at home. For example, a hot bath may help with nausea, but too could too increase sweating which can lead to dehydration. They also said that medical professionals often recommend some medications such as ibuprofen, acetaminophen, and histamines to relieve symptoms.
However, the only cure for cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome is to stop using cannabis completely. Cleveland Clinic said, “Most people with CHS who stop using cannabis have relief from symptoms within 10 days. But it may take a few months to feel fully recovered.”
For the vast majority of cannabis users, CHS won’t be a problem. But they may encounter dehydration due to the other reasons listed above. According to Very Well Mind, the best approach is to avoid dehydration in the first place. They said “Sip water regularly, rather than gulp it down, and make sure that you eat enough food containing salt to replace the salt lost through sweating.”
However, if you’re already showing signs of dehydration (fatigue, headache, dizziness etc) and you know you’ve been sweating a lot, vomiting or having diarrhea, there are things you can do to feel better.
Healthline says, “drinking water along with an electrolyte-containing rehydration drink, such as a low-sugar sports or electrolyte drink, may be recommended”
But according to Healthline, seek emergency care if you:
- Have blood in your stool
- Can’t keep anything down
- Have severe diarrhea or diarrhea for 3 or more days
- Are disoriented
Weed Effects that Mimic Dehydration
On the other hand, weed may make you feel dehydrated even if you’re not.
For example, stoners report having a dry mouth, often called cotton mouth, and feeling thirsty after using weed. According to Business Insider, people experience these symptoms because of weed’s effects on the salivary gland. Business Insider said, “It turns out cannabinoids receptors are located where our saliva is produced. When these receptors are activated by cannabis use, they inhibit the production of saliva.”
Having a dry mouth and thirst will feel like dehydration because they are common symptoms of dehydration. However, you may not actually be dehydrated. Even so, it’s still important to treat symptoms of dry mouth because they can affect your breath and the health of your teeth.
To treat or prevent dry mouth, Healthline suggests:
- Sucking on ice cubes
- Sipping water throughout the day
- Opting for toothpaste and mouthwash for dry mouth
- Limiting salt and sugar intake
Does weed dehydrate you? Not quite. No evidence shows that using weed directly causes dehydration. However, weed may have side effects that lead to dehydration. In addition to that, weed can also have side effects that mimic the symptoms of dehydration. If you’re worried about being dehydrated, sip water throughout the day. Chances are you won’t have to worry if weed can dehydrate you or not; just stay hydrated.