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The interaction between cannabis and other drugs
You might be surprised to discover just how many of today’s prescription and over-the counter- medicines just don’t go well together and, if you get it wrong, the consequences can be fatal.
Many who take medication for heart disease have to give everyday medications like aspirin, Ibuprofen or certain antibiotics a wide berth, depending on what medicines they have been prescribed.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise then to discover that that cannabis can also interact with other drugs.
Cannabis is classed as a drug because a drug is described as a medicine or other substance which has a physiological effect when ingested or otherwise introduced into the body.
With cannabis made up of over 400 different chemicals, there is always going to be a good chance that one, or more of them, may interact with other drugs in your body. Aspirin, for example contains only oxygen, hydrogen and carbon molecules.
When two drugs interact, one of three things usually happens.
The additive effect is where the intended effect of each drug is produced independently, but the effects of the drugs are added to each other.
The synergistic effect is where the two drugs combine to produce a stronger effect than if they had been taken independently.
Lastly, there is the antagonistic effect, where one or both drugs work less effectively, or react negatively with each other.
The mechanisms which facilitate drug interaction include increasing or reducing drug absorption in the digestive tract.
They can also alter drug absorption levels in the liver, the rate drugs are excreted by the kidneys, and, of course, they can trigger competing reactions in the body.
One of the problems with identifying how cannabis interacts with other drugs lies in the fact that cannabis doesn’t achieve one singe, common effect, like prescription drugs.
People react differently to cannabis, and cannabis can have both uplifting and also depressing effects, as well as being hallucinogenic.
Different strains of cannabis have a different chemical makeup.
While not conclusive, a few tests have produced the following results for cannabis combinations.
With alcohol, prior consumption of alcohol can increase the absorption rate of THC into the body.
With amphetamines like MDMA, cannabis can attenuate some of the effects of amphetamines.
With cocaine, cannabis, as a depressant, can reduce the cocaine high.
With codeine, as codeine is opium based, the combination of the two can produce a sedative and euphoric buzz.
With LSD, reports indicate that cannabis can enhance the hallucinations and, if taken some time after LSD, can re-trigger the hallucinations.
We have to point out though that this video is purely for information-sharing purposes and that the taking of individual drugs or a cocktail of drugs can have fatal consequences.