I am a COVID Long-Hauler. What does that mean? It means that even though I didn’t suffer from COVID for very long, the after effects have been life changing, and not in a good way. However, through my COVID journey I knew that humor was important and cannabis helps with humor. So I decided to share a few thoughts about cannabis and long-COVID.
1. It’s nice to not feel crappy all of the time.
Let’s face it, as humans, we like to sometimes feel good, and honestly, after a few hours of being awake, I may not feel that great.
2. I like doing more than just one thing.
I can get away with doing more of the things I want and need to with cannabis use than I could without it. For instance, if a loved one comes over or wants to talk on the phone when I am feeling unwell, sometimes using THC or CBD, or a combination of the two takes away my symptoms enough that I can tolerate that phone call or visit when I otherwise would not feel up to it.
3. Standing tolerance and physical stamina.
Both CBD and THC seem to allow me to tolerate standing for longer and to do more household chores than I otherwise would. I still have to do tasks one at a time with breaks in between, but it helps me do them without crashing.
4. A reset for mental stamina and sensory overload.
Cannabis relieves some of my mental and sensory exhaustion. For instance, if I look at a computer screen for too long, I may feel foggy. The longer I’ve stared at a screen, the more I start to feel somewhere between car sick and like I’m wearing a leaded blanket. THC or CBD can sometimes give me a second wind to get more work done.
A 5mg sativa edible, for instance, does wonders for cutting through the brain fog and getting me to focus. I’m also more sensitive to sound and movement in my visual field than I used to be. When I feel overloaded, THC can smooth over the rough sensory edges so that I don’t get irritable.
5. Food sensitivities.
Some days, if I have gone off my low-histamine diet MCAS diet or eat something that bothers me, I may feel an unpleasant rush in my arms or otherwise unwell after eating. Many Covid long-haulers developed food sensitivities at some point during their post-viral journey. Eating a low histamine diet lately has helped, but cannabis eases my symptoms if something triggers a reaction.
6. Emotional resilience for physical preservation.
I have an illness that gets worse with over-exertion, so cannabis helps me go with the flow. The worst thing that I could do with my condition is to push and try to force myself back into the life I had before. It wouldn’t work, but without cannabis, I’m afraid I’d be railing against my forced confinement and drastically limited energy capacity.
Cannabis helps me to accept and adapt to my reality. It lets me surrender to the rest that I need to preserve myself and heal as much as I can. On a day-to-day basis, THC and CBD allow me to have a better quality of life than I would otherwise. Cannabis does not take the place of rest, however, and I do watch myself to make sure I don’t push too far when I’m feeling good.
A Word About Cannabis, COVID, and ME/CFS
As a segment of COVID long-haulers joins the millions of ME/CFS patients without any approved medication, there could be a sizeable market for anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidative drugs developed from cannabis. It may not be safe for every long-COVID patient, but for those who can tolerate it and develop ME/CFS, cannabis could provide substantial symptom relief. I firmly believe that it may also offer protective benefits. I can’t imagine going down this scary tunnel of chronic illness without the symptom relief that I get from it.