Can you take weed and Abilify together? (+3 interactions)
In this article, we will discuss the possibilities of taking weed and Abilify together. We will discuss the clinical efficacy and potential benefits of taking these in combination. Furthermore, we will look into the precautionary measures of using weed and Abilify in combination.
Can you take weed and Abilify together?
It is not generally recommended to take weed and Abilify together. Weed has the potential to interact with Abilify and worsen its effects. Weed and Abilify together can lead to increased sedation, drowsiness, and dizziness in patients.
Combining weed and Abilify may exacerbate the psychotic condition for which Abilify has been prescribed. Taking weed and Abilify in combination may exert varying effects on different patients due to their medication response and variability.
However, always discuss with your healthcare provider before taking weed while being on Abilify to avoid the potential worsening of psychotic symptoms.
What does research suggest?
According to research studies, weed smoking alters your cognitive abilities leading to a condition called cannabis-induced psychotic symptoms (CIPS). It is a serious condition that has similar symptoms and clinical representation as schizophrenia while Abilify is an antipsychotic usually prescribed for schizophrenia (1).
A rare case of a 22-year-old boy who has been reported with severe weed addiction. It was informed that he has been smoking five weed cigarettes for almost 7 years now. This patient showed all symptoms of being at ultra-high risk for psychosis due to weed smoking (1).
This patient also displayed CIPS such as hallucinations, visual disturbances, and delusions. The patient was given Abilify to reduce these psychotic and schizophrenic symptoms (1).
Abilify is also given to psychiatric patients as an off-label use for comorbid weed addictions. However, this patient was given Abilify 10mg/day for a good 6 months and he showed effective medication compliance (1).
Later, the patient reported no more CIPS. He also reported smoking weed at the same level along with taking treatment with Abilify and showed improvement in CIPS and his overall social appearance (1).
Based on this case report it can be evaluated that Abilify can suppress CIPS in ultra-high-risk psychotic patients. However, further studies are required to analyze the use of weed along with antipsychotic drugs to alleviate psychotic symptoms (1).
What are the interactions between weed and Abilify?
There could be many potential interactions between weed and Abilify. If you are taking these two concurrently, then be ready to face some of the following interactions (2,3):
Depression of the central nervous system
Taking weed and Abilify together can lead to CNS depression and reduction in certain mental activities. This combination may cause excessive sedation and drowsiness and make you unable to think and react to normal situations.
Increased psychological effects
Abilify and weed in combination can affect a person’s mood and cognition. They have strong psychological effects on patients taking them together. Abilify is an antipsychotic drug given for schizophrenia and maniac attacks.
Taking weed along with Abilify can exacerbate your mental health condition and may cause excessive psychological side effects.
Individual patient variability
Patients and their medication response to every drug or substance varies from person to person. Taking Abilify and weed in combination may cause severe psychological responses in some patients while others may face mild side effects.
What to do if you have taken weed and Abilify together?
If you have taken weed and Abilify in combination, and you experience excessive psychological side effects, then immediately contact your healthcare provider. Careful medical monitoring should be done to determine the safe use of these drugs together.
There is no specific antidote available for this combination. However, if you face a severe overdose, then your doctor may provide healthcare based on your specific condition to manage toxicity.
If your doctor has allowed you to take weed and Abilify together, it is important to have regular follow-ups to avoid any hazardous symptoms due to this combination.
If taking weed and Abilify are causing excessive side effects, then your doctor might opt for changing your antipsychotic medication or tampering with its dose to prevent having exacerbated psychological side effects.
How to break weed addiction?
The first and foremost step to breaking weed addiction is realization and acknowledgement. Along with the desire to change and improve for the betterment.
Seek professional help and your doctor would recommend treatment based on your addiction and preference. Some medications like Wellbutrin can help with weed addiction. However, you need to rely on your doctor’s expertise to help your condition.
You should also look for situations or conditions that trigger weed use so that you can plan to avoid them. Furthermore, look for alternative health coping mechanisms such as mindful exercise, hobbies, and other therapies.
Breaking such addictions takes time and patience. However, with consistency and perseverance, and the right professional help, you can overcome weed addiction.
Based on the information mentioned in this article, I believe taking weed and Abilify together causes exacerbation in the patient’s psychotic symptoms. This combination may lead to severe health consequences in some patients.
Therefore, I would suggest to always consult your doctor before taking weed and Abilify in combination to avoid any sort of serious complications.
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Rolland, B., Geoffroy, P. A., Jardri, R., & Cottencin, O. (2013). Aripiprazole for Treating Cannabis-Induced Psychotic Symptoms in Ultrahigh-Risk Individuals. Clinical Neuropharmacology, 36(3), 98–99. doi: 10.1097/wnf.0b013e3182908330 https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23673914/
Gettu N, Saadabadi A. Aripiprazole. [Updated 2023 May 16]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2023 Jan-. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK547739/
NIDA. “Cannabis (Marijuana) DrugFacts.” National Institute on Drug Abuse, 24 Dec. 2019, https://nida.nih.gov/publications/drugfacts/cannabis-marijuana Accessed 25 Oct. 2023. https://nida.nih.gov/publications/drugfacts/cannabis-marijuana