OMG I smoked marijuana and felt like I was going to DIE!?!?
...your friend hands you the blunt. You have smoked a couple of times, and hit it now when they pass it to you. It goes around a couple of times and you hit it each time and laugh and joke with your friends. Your eyes get heavy and your mouth gets dry. Your head feels like a balloon and you feel your heart beat in your chest. You start to get a bit anxious as you notice your heart beat speeds up and your chest rises and falls with your breath just a bit faster. You look around the room and it starts to swell. The room seems to be a bit smaller and more claustrophobic than it should, and you decide to go to the bathroom (which should feel equally if not more claustrophobic, but whatever). You walk, a bit hazily, to the bathroom and lock yourself in. You shut the toilet top and sit on it. You drop your head in your hands now aware that walking has shortened your breath and your chest gets a bit tighter. You begin to sweat and shut your eyes. At once the room is spinning and you breathe heavier and harder to compensate for how fast your heart is beating. "OMG am I going to DIE?" The thought flashes across your mind like a marquee sign being flicked on for the first time, bright and true. That must be it. I am having a heart attack or I am going to stop breathing. **STOP!!**
You are not going to die. Actually nothing is physically wrong with you if these symptoms or similar has happened to you after ingesting or smoking marijuana. What IS happening is that you are feeling the onset of a panic attack as a result of this sudden overload of marijuana. WOW it feels crazy right? Why would anyone smoke if this was the result every time? It is not the result every time for everyone, and it has to do with a few things.
-The type of marijuana that you are smoking, may be stronger or contain more THC than what you are used to smoking. Some people start out and gradually become comfortable with smoking, and then one day your friend just happens to grab some really good shit from their dealer and POOF there you go in LA LA Land in the bathroom about to write up your will. It happens sometimes. Don't sweat it.
-How much water you have been drinking and the amount of oxygen in the room. If you are going to a smoke session with friends be sure to bring water. Dehydration is not a laughing matter and it can cause damage to skin and vital organs with prolonged deprivation. Cotton-mouth or dry mouth, is a small side effect of marijuana and can be an indication that you need more water or food. Keep healthy snacks and water around all the time!
-Your experience with marijuana may or may not be a contributing factor. I, a long time smoker, and proficient edible-eater, have had a panic attack from an edible that I ate because the girl who made them, did not make them correctly and the distribution of the butter inside each one was way off. I ate it and BOOM I was in a Gregg's bathroom fighting off what felt like "death" in 20 minutes. It was a horrible experience, but even during the ordeal understood the issue. Too much sometimes is still, regardless of the experience you have, too much.
Helping Combat Anxiety Attacks from Marijuana
I suggest the following:
a) drink some water and relax, maybe even lie down as soon as you feel the attack coming on.
b) get some oxygen flow in the room or go outside.
c) tell your friends you do not feel well and that it may be an anxiety attack so that they may help comfort you and keep watch.
d) eat something if possible.
DO NOT drink alcohol while you are smoking. This will cause a pretty similar instance as the anxiety attack.
Always remember, be safe when having a good time with marijuana.