Will Using Weed Affect My Fertility?
In 2014, the United Nations estimated 182.5 million people or about 3.8 percent of the world’s population were using cannabis. The number of weed smokers is going up thanks in part to legalization an increase of products on the market, and people like Dan Savage giving the go-ahead for weed when they’re having trouble getting in that lustful headspace. He also credits pot with making him a better dad.
But let’s face it, Dan Savage didn’t have fertility on the mind because, by the time he started using it, he had already adopted his only son, along with his husband, Terry. Or maybe they hadn’t adopted yet, but the point is that he’s probably gotten this far without having to question the impact his weed use has on his fertility. So, what about the couples who do want to use weed to get it on and eventually use their parts to make a kid? There are a lot of products out there to get things going in the bedroom, from THC breath mints to cannabis-based lubes. Not to mention the pre-rolls you keep bedside for when you want to get a little silly. So, we have to ask, does the use of marijuana by future moms and dads matter?
If you have ovaries
You’re a complicated one with different hormones creating a multi-phase menstrual cycle (some in the woo-woo camp like to say it’s moon-like) about every 28 days.
The endocannabinoid system and female reproductive system are intricately linked, as stated by Lisa K. Brents’ study in the Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine. From the menstrual cycle to pregnancy and all the subphases affect how the cannabinoid receptors react to endocannabinoids. Women seem to be more sensitive to cannabinoids while ovulating and the study concludes that THC, in particular, could potentially lead to disruption of the reproductive system. But since a study, the Department of Health and Human Services on weed smokers’ hormone levels did not find evidence that non-chronic smoking (aka using marijuana but not, like, all the time) messed with female reproductive hormones. So, a little weed sometimes is probably safe.
If you have testicles
You need to be worried about two levels: testosterone and sperm. Animal studies show that chronic use can impact testosterone levels, and it screws with sperm in some scary-sounding ways. However, the results on humans are too mixed to make a conclusion.
What researchers have found in people is that marijuana can lower testosterone but not enough to deviate from normal levels, and testosterone levels can return to normal just by laying off the dabs for a bit. Plus, the April 2016 issue of the FASEB Journal published a study that goes up against the myth that sperm count decreases with chronic marijuana use. In the study, mice responded to CB2 receptor stimulation by creating more sperm, not less. And you know what else stimulates the CB2 receptor? A dose of CBD.
So, it seems like moderate use is a safe bet if you’re having sex and aren’t fixing to get pregnant but also don’t want to end up “fixed” by their habit. And if you want to start tapering your use in the hopes of making a baby, try switching to a high-CBD strain like Harlequin, Sour Tsunami, and Cannatonic.