how to avoid coughing when smoking weed

How To Avoid Coughing When Smoking Weed

Most beginner and veteran smokers can agree that coughing is the least enjoyable part of the smoke session, especially if the product or what tool you’re using to smoke with seems extra harsh. Most smokers aren’t taught how to properly inhale when smoking cannabis, but we’re here to clear that up for you today! The challenge has been accepted. For research purposes (haha), we’ve tried several techniques in the quest of finding the best way to hit a joint or bong without coughing. Everyone wants to enjoy a nice smooth, potent hit without having to cough up a lung and exhale slowly and calmly while fully savoring the flavor and potency of your weed. Keep reading to find some cough-saving tips.

Grind Your Cannabis First

This might not be much of a surprise for some of you, but grinding your weed and how you grind it makes a difference. We can’t stress this enough – using an herb grinder is crucial to ensure even heat distribution on your bud and igniting at a constant rate will help provide consistent airflow while inhaling. Our grinders at TokersHub offer unique, personalized designs with metal construction perfect for shredding and grinding herb for your enjoyment.

Slow and Steady Does the Trick

Inhale with a technique that draws slowly and steadily to allow the smoke to gently fill your lungs until the bong is ready to clear. For smoking a joint that will continue to burn away product whether or not you are smoking it once it is lit, same thing – take your take and inhale slowly. People who cough a lot on joints may be taking too big of hits and cause coughing and more product waste.

Add Oxygen

Adding fresh oxygen into your lungs along with the smoke is an important factor in smoking cannabis. First, you’ll want to draw the smoke in your mouth before inhaling a nice breath of fresh air. This is ideal if you are smoking a blunt, joint, vape, etc. For bongs and pipes , pulling the bowl or carb will add fresh air into the hit already as you hit. The extra oxygen will help cool down your lungs while re-oxygenating your body as you absorb the THC.

Don’t Hold It

A lot of people that that holding in the smoke after inhaling to give it some extra time to work, but that actually doesn’t do anything for you. As soon as you inhale the smoke, your body already absorbs the cannabinoids and you can only absorb as much as your lung has the capacity to inhale. Holding the smoke in won’t get you any more high, but may cause some dizziness or lightheadedness due to the lack of oxygen.

Steady Exhale

Similar to your inhale, allow your exhale to flow just as slowly and softly. Without having to hold your smoke in or cutting off oxygen, you will have more control over the smoke and your breath as you exhale, so your lungs are less likely to get triggered to cough. A handy tip is to do a few practice rounds of calm breathing before your next smoke session to get the hang of it and relax a little before you get too excited to hit your bong or blunt a little too hard and commence the coughs all over again.

Try a Vaporizer

Vaporizers are a great smoking accessory that doesn’t require combusting any cannabis or product at all. Weed vapes will heat your bud to the point where it dehydrates and creates a thick cloud of THC smoke. There is no hot or rough smoke involved! Plus, you’ll waste a lot less product than smoking a blunt or joint since your product is only used when you hit.


If you just can’t stand coughing to the point where you want to avoid it altogether but still want the high, stick to edibles. You can find cannabis-infused edibles available at your local dispensary, or make some of your own. There are plenty of great-tasting recipes and kinds of edibles people are concocting every day! There are different ways to get high, why stick to just one?

From our experiences, herb smokers who have to deal with a ton of coughing usually stem from holding in the smoke a little too long or failing to add oxygen along with your hits. Hopefully, using the tips we’ve talked about today above will help you have the smoking experience you desire with a lot less coughing or no more coughing at all. There are also alternatives, such as using a cannabis oil vaporizer or taking the edible route to still get high and enjoy yourself. Regardless what you choose, happy smoking! Good luck.

Tips on how to avoid coughing when smoking weed. Whether you’re a beginner or a veteran smoker, everyone can agree that nobody likes coughing up a lung. Read on to find out how to not cough when smoking weed.

Why Does Weed Make You Cough?

If you’ve experienced a coughing fit after smoking cannabis, you’re not alone. It’s a common, natural response to smoke inhalation.

Sometimes, though, coughing can occur even when you’re not smoking. This is more likely to happen if you regularly smoke cannabis.

To learn why smoking cannabis can make you cough, read on. We’ll also explore how smoking cannabis might affect lung health, along with the risk of lung cancer.

Your throat and lungs are lined with sensory nerves. They work to detect irritating substances, like smoke, in your airways.

If you inhale an irritant, the nerves send signals throughout your respiratory tract. This produces a cough reflex, which helps you get rid of the irritating substance. The goal is to protect your respiratory tract, and ultimately, your lungs.

This is what happens when you smoke cannabis. The smoke irritates your airways, causing your nerves to trigger a cough reflex. It’s a normal reaction to inhaling any kind of smoke.

Research suggests that coughing related to cannabis smoking is usually due to short-term effects, rather than long-term damage. Let’s take a look at the research.


According to a 2013 review, smoking cannabis causes tiny injuries to the large airways, or bronchi. Your bronchi are the passages that connect your trachea (windpipe) to your lungs.

This increases your risk for chronic bronchitis, or inflamed bronchi, which causes frequent coughing. Chronic bronchitis typically goes away when you stop regularly smoking.

Defense against infection

Habitual smoking also decreases cilia in the airways. Cilia are small hairs that filter out particles and germs. And though habitual smoking reduces your lungs’ defense against infection, it isn’t associated with long-term damage, according to the 2013 review.

Long-term lung function

A 2012 study specifically examined the link between smoking cannabis and long-term lung function over a 20-year period. The researchers found that occasional smoking wasn’t linked to adverse lung function.

Though they speculated that heavy smoking can cause lasting damage, they weren’t able to make a solid conclusion. The study lacked enough participants who heavily smoked cannabis.

It’s worth noting that smoking cannabis is associated with lasting lung damage if you also smoke tobacco. In a 2016 study , people who smoked cannabis and tobacco were more likely to have impaired lung function than those who only smoked tobacco.

Despite these findings, scientists are still learning how smoking cannabis affects lung health over time. More long-term studies are necessary.

According to a 2020 study , cannabis smoke contains 110 compounds with potentially toxic properties. Sixty-nine of these compounds are also found in tobacco smoke. As a result, many people wonder if smoking cannabis can cause lung cancer.

The research is mixed. A 2015 meta-analysis found a weak link between long-term cannabis smoking and lung cancer risk. An older 2006 study also found no association between long-term smoking and lung cancer.

However, a 2013 study , which spanned over 40 years, found that frequently smoking cannabis doubles the risk of lung cancer. The association persisted after the researchers adjusted their data for tobacco use, alcohol consumption, and respiratory disease.

Similarly, an older 2008 study found a connection between cannabis smoking and lung cancer after adjusting for cigarette smoking.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) notes that it’s difficult to confirm a solid link. That’s because cannabis use often occurs alongside other behaviors that increase lung cancer risk, including cigarette smoking.

Therefore, more studies are needed involving people who smoke cannabis and not cigarettes.

It’s also possible for lung cancer to cause coughing. In this case, the coughing will be persistent or get worse over time. Other common symptoms of lung cancer include:

  • coughing blood
  • chest pain
  • hoarseness
  • poor appetite
  • unexplained weight loss
  • fatigue
  • new wheezing
  • shortness of breath

Keep in mind that coughing has many potential causes. If you’re concerned about your coughing, visit your doctor.

As mentioned earlier, regularly smoking cannabis can lead to chronic bronchitis. Bronchitis is considered chronic if you have coughing and mucus for at least 3 months for 2 consecutive years.

Since chronic bronchitis causes persistent coughing, you’ll likely cough even when you’re not smoking. The cough might come and go, and it might get worse on some days. You may also have wheezing.

If you have chronic bronchitis due to smoking cannabis, quitting will decrease your symptoms.

Smoke can produce a cough reflex, which is your body’s way of getting rid of irritants. Researchers are still studying the long-term effects of smoking cannabis.