Marijuana Health Basics

Marijuana affects everyone differently and is not recommended for those under 21 or for women who are pregnant and/or breastfeeding.


Respiratory/Lung Issues

Marijuana smoke irritates the lungs. People who smoke marijuana daily or near-daily may develop a regular cough, bronchitis, mucus and wheezing. Marijuana smoke contains the same cancer-causing chemicals as tobacco smoke. Heavy marijuana smoking is strongly associated with tissue damage in the airways of your lungs. It  is possible this tissue damage may increase the likelihood of developing lung cancer. More research is needed to understand the extent of damage smoking marijuana does to the lungs.


Mental Health

Daily or near-daily use of marijuana can damage your memory. Marijuana, especially in high doses, can cause temporary psychosis (not knowing what is real, hallucinations and paranoia) while you are high.


Secondhand Smoke

Secondhand smoke from marijuana has many of the same cancer-causing chemicals as secondhand smoke from tobacco, so do not smoke around children, pregnant women, pets, or anyone who doesn't want to be exposed to secondhand smoke.


Youth Health Effects

It can be harmful for youth to use marijuana. Visit our Youth Health Effects page for more information.