Marijuana has been known to mankind for millennia. For the first time, it wasmentioned in manuscripts from Ancient China dating from 2373. BC. It was used both as a recreational drug and as a medicine. Marijuana is banned in many countries, including Bulgaria. In others, it is decriminalized in some form (for example, medical marijuana). Today, marijuana is more widespread than ever before, which makes us wonder if its use can affect fertility.
It is known that chronic use of marijuana can lead to addiction and, in the worst case scenario, to psychiatric problems. Precisely because it is forbidden in so many places, there are not many studies about its connection to infertility, but experts believe that it may have an impact.
MARIJUANA AND MALE FERTILITY
The effects of marijuana on fertility are better studied in men. Regular use can reduce libido and lead to problems with erection and ejaculation. Semen analyses of these men also show abnormalities. They usually have a smaller number of sperm cells whose motility is also altered. Exposed to THC (tetrahydrocannabinol – the substance that makes you high), sperm initially show hypermotility (move very quickly). Consequently, their speed decreases and, as a result, they can hardly reach the egg.
WHAT ABOUT FEMALE FERTILITY?
In women, marijuana also reduces libido. Its frequent use is also associated with irregular ovulation. After smoking marijuana, THC is found in the female reproductive which affects sperm and thus the chances of fertilization to occur. The use of marijuana is also associated with an increased risk of miscarriage due to its effects on rapidly dividing cells such as the embryo’s cells. THC can indeed relieve the feeling of nausea, but its embryotoxicity makes it contraindicated in pregnant women.
THC can be found in the body for up to 8 days after a single marijuana use. Regular “consumers” need 2-3 months to clean marijuana from their bodies. If you plan to become pregnant, it is important to stop using marijuana. If you or someone you know has a problem with marijuana or other illegal substances, you can find help.