ABOUT THE CAMPAIGN

Why did the Lung Health Foundation create this campaign?

The Lung Health Foundation is dedicated to ending gaps in the prevention, diagnosis, and care of lung disease in Canada.

When it comes to recreational cannabis use, we saw a big gap: there’s just too little information out there about the respiratory risks of cannabis smoke. Without this information, Canadians aren’t able to make a truly informed choice about whether (or how often) they smoke cannabis.

Our goal is to highlight the potential risks so that Canadians can make decisions that are right for them. As lung health experts, we can also provide guidance to people who have made the decision to cut down on their cannabis use, or quit altogether.

How is this campaign funded?

The Toker is run by the Lung Health Foundation, a registered charity, and made possible through a financial contribution from Health Canada.

Isn’t cannabis legal?

Yes! As of 2018, cannabis is a legal substance in Canada. Our goal is to present evidence about the potential respiratory risks of cannabis smoke so that Canadians can make decisions that are right for them. The Lung Health Foundation is not advocating for an end to legal cannabis.

You can learn more about cannabis laws and regulations here. The Cannabis Act can be accessed here.

What else does the Lung Health Foundation say about cannabis?

  • Large research gaps remain. In 2019, the Lung Health Foundation announced a new series of research studies around medical and recreational cannabis use.
  • The Lung Health Foundation recognizes that there is an increasing demand for medical cannabis, but that many healthcare professionals do not feel that they have the proper knowledge to have informed discussions with patients. The Lung Health Foundation is working to fill this gap through education sessions for healthcare providers.

Who can I contact if I have questions about the campaign?

Please contact news@lunghealth.ca for more information about The Toker.

ABOUT THE CAMPAIGN

Why did the Lung Health Foundation create this campaign?

The Lung Health Foundation is dedicated to ending gaps in the prevention, diagnosis, and care of lung disease in Canada.

When it comes to recreational cannabis use, we saw a big gap: there’s just too little information out there about the respiratory risks of cannabis smoke. Without this information, Canadians aren’t able to make a truly informed choice about whether (or how often) they smoke cannabis.

Our goal is to highlight the potential risks so that Canadians can make decisions that are right for them. As lung health experts, we can also provide guidance to people who have made the decision to cut down on their cannabis use, or quit altogether.

How is this campaign funded?

The Toker is run by the Lung Health Foundation, a registered charity, and made possible through a financial contribution from Health Canada.

Isn’t cannabis legal?

Yes! As of 2018, cannabis is a legal substance in Canada. Our goal is to present evidence about the potential respiratory risks of cannabis smoke so that Canadians can make decisions that are right for them. The Lung Health Foundation is not advocating for an end to legal cannabis.

You can learn more about cannabis laws and regulations here. The Cannabis Act can be accessed here.

What else does the Lung Health Foundation say about cannabis?

  • Large research gaps remain. In 2019, the Lung Health Foundation announced a new series of research studies around medical and recreational cannabis use.
  • The Lung Health Foundation recognizes that there is an increasing demand for medical cannabis, but that many healthcare professionals do not feel that they have the proper knowledge to have informed discussions with patients. The Lung Health Foundation is working to fill this gap through education sessions for healthcare providers.

Who can I contact if I have questions about the campaign?

Please contact news@lunghealth.ca for more information about The Toker.

ABOUT CANNABIS + LUNG HEALTH

Is it the cannabis or the smoke that’s the problem?

Smoking is the most common way that Canadians use recreational cannabis.  According to the Canadian Cannabis Survey 2019, 84% of respondents who had used cannabis in the previous year report smoking it.

Of all of the cannabis consumption methods, smoking poses the most risk to your lung health. Whether from burning wood, tobacco or cannabis, toxins, irritants and carcinogens are released from the combustion of materials and brought into your lungs.

As respiratory experts, we have focused thetokeronline.ca content on cannabis smoke. Every form of cannabis consumption will come with slightly different risks.

Is vaping cannabis safe?

The Lung Health Foundation cannot recommend vaping cannabis until more research on its long term safety exists. We urge you to consider non-inhaled methods of cannabis consumption.

Why do you compare tobacco smoke and cannabis smoke?

Formerly known as the Ontario Lung Association, the Lung Health Foundation has a decades-long history of helping people quit smoking cigarettes and other forms of tobacco. We have also played a big role in preventing tobacco use in youth and young adults.

When we compare tobacco and cannabis smoke, we are not promoting the “safety” of one over the other. Rather, we are trying to undo the dangerous misconception that cannabis smoke is “safe” or “safer” when compared to tobacco smoke. Both come with risks, and neither should be considered safe for your lungs.

What if I smoke cannabis regularly, and feel fine?

Not all people who use cannabis will experience symptoms, and not all symptoms will be immediate. Most of the risks we outline on thetokeronline.ca – like experiencing the symptoms of bronchitis – increase over time, and also increase when one smokes more often. The choices you make today can impact your future lung health.

If I’m using medicinal cannabis, am I exposed to the same lung health risks?

If you have a prescription for medicinal cannabis, your healthcare provider has already assessed the balance of risk vs. potential benefit for your unique situation.

As medicinal cannabis is available in many forms, the Lung Health Foundation does not recommend smoking it. We urge you to discuss the various forms available with your healthcare provider.

We are currently working to close gaps in medicinal cannabis knowledge for both patients and healthcare providers through research and education. Read more about our advice about medicinal cannabis here.

I’m not looking to quit, but I do want to protect my lungs. What can I do?

As with quitting tobacco, quitting cannabis is a personal decision. If you do not feel ready to quit yet, you can still take steps to reduce the potential harm to your lungs. Visit our Protect Your Lungs section for tips.

Who can I contact for more information about lung health? How can I get help with quitting?

Did you know that you have access to the guidance of Certified Respiratory Educators through the Lung Health Foundation?  Our Lung Health Line is free, confidential, and non-judgemental. CREs can help you understand your existing lung condition, make a plan to manage your symptoms, find services that you need, and more. Chat live at lunghealth.ca, email info@lunghealth.ca, or call 1-888-344-LUNG (5864). The Lung Health Line operates Monday to Friday, from 8:30 to 4:30 EST.

SHARE THE TOKER’S SAGA

Share the misadventures, and help your friends breathe a little easier.

SHARE THE TOKER’S SAGA

Share the misadventures, and help your friends breathe a little easier.