It's no secret that as you get older, your body changes and can become more sensitive to various substances, including marijuana. Your reaction can change with age even if you've been using it for years.

I read an article the other day from MSN that talked about this very topic. Unfortunately, they showed images of elderly people falling down stairs, using respirators, and even being pushed around in wheelchairs. Some were shown falling asleep at work. While the whole thing seemed a bit overdramatic and alarmist, there were some side effects that older people should be aware of.

These are some side effects of using marijuana over the age of 50 that may surprise you:

  • Cognitive Impairment - Using cannabis might make memory and thinking issues worse. While this is true for anyone regardless of age, it may worsen the older you get.  THC, the active ingredient, slows down your thinking, making it harder to remember things.
  • Increased Heart Rate - If you're someone who suffers from heart problems, you should be aware that THC causes an increased heart rate. This automatically puts you at a higher risk for a heart attack or stroke.
  • High Blood Pressure - Consuming cannabis may raise your blood pressure, especially if you experience anxiety or paranoia.
  • Respiratory Issues - If you have respiratory issues, avoid smoking marijuana as it may worsen your condition. This may not be a surprising side effect but rather common sense.
  • Sleep Disturbances - While many people use cannabis to aid sleep, it can also disrupt sleep patterns.

I can personally comment on that last one. I'm 50 and used to eat gummies before bed to help with sleep issues. It worked for a while, but as I got older, I found it increasingly disrupted my sleep patterns. My sleep quality went downhill in my late 40s.

This article is not meant to deter you from using cannabis; rather, it's about making you aware of the issues you could face as you get older.

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