Marihuana and Asthma

Jennifer G. Mouser

I have had asthma my entire life. I never did well in athletics, and there were times when I could not participate in physical activities.

When I started smoking marihuana regularly I noticed a slight difference. When I met my husband I gradually became a heavy smoker. The first year we were together he had to take me to the emergency room three times because of my asthma. I had to have breathing treatments with a nebulizer. In addition to my inhaler, the doctor prescribed steroids and instructed me on how to monitor the strength of my lungs.

As Brian and I spent more time together and eventually moved in together, he noticed that my attacks were less frequent. By the end of our second year together, there were no late-night trips to the emergency room and I used my inhaler only a handful of times.

Two years ago I went to Montana with my mother for about two and a half months. During that time I smoked a bowl per day, sometimes not at all. After three weeks I was having a lot of trouble breathing and had to start my old asthma treatments again.

Since my return home in December 1997 I have no had an inhaler in my possession and I have not had the need for one. I feel that my asthma is subdued by marihuana. The feeling of not being able to fill my lungs with air is very scary, and I hope I never had to go to the emergency room for an asthma attack again. This is one of the many reasons for me to be a stoner for life.

My husband uses marihuana as a pain reliever. In 1995 he was injured on the job. He herniated three discs in his lower back and has been diagnosed with degenerative disc disease. Without marihuana, days are unbearable for him. The doctor has prescribed narcotic painkillers, but they do not work as well, not to mention the risk of addiction. He has also developed stomach problems from years of use. Marihuana has been the only thing that helps relieve his nausea and back pain.